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To investigate how the angle of a slope affects the acceleration of a marble.

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Introduction

Motion Down a Slope

Aim:

To investigate how the angle of a slope affects the acceleration of a marble.

Introduction:

        As bodies freely roll down a slope they accelerate. Various factors may affect the acceleration.

Variables:

There are a number of things that affect the acceleration of the marble:

  • Angle/Gradient of slope. Changing the angle of the slope would affect the acceleration of the squash ball as it changes the energy the marble starts with as steeper angles raise the slope start higher so the marble would have more potential energy.
  • Mass of marble.Changing the mass of the marble would affect the acceleration because it means it has more energy pulling it downwards and so would accelerate faster.
  • Surface. Changing the surface may change the amount of friction between the slope and the marble. This would affect the amount of energy absorbed. If there was more friction then more energy is absorbed so the marble has less pushing it along and so accelerates slower.
  • Gravity. A change in the gravity would change the amount of energy pulling down the marble and so change the amount of energy pushing it along and so change the acceleration of the marble.
  • Aerodynamics. A change in the aerodynamics would create a change in the air friction. This would change the amount of energy absorbed and so change the amount of energy left pushing it along changing the acceleration.
...read more.

Middle

Height of Slope

(cm)

Time taken for marble to roll down slope (sec)

(°)

1

2

3

4

5

Average

10

26

1.48

1.50

1.49

1.51

1.49

1.49

20

51

1.14

1.12

1.11

1.10

1.16

1.13

30

75

1.09

1.14

1.12

1.11

0.97

1.09

40

96

0.62

0.69

0.68

0.66

0.63

0.66

50

115

0.61

0.67

0.68

0.69

0.63

0.66

60

130

0.60

0.60

0.66

0.61

0.61

0.61

70

141

0.51

0.54

0.55

0.56

0.56

0.54

80

148

0.56

0.57

0.58

0.56

0.58

0.57

90

150

0.55

0.56

0.56

0.57

0.59

0.57

Acceleration:

To work out the acceleration use the formula:

A=2S/T2

...read more.

Conclusion

        My results suggest that the theoretical data was correct, as mine where only slower due to friction, and they support the conclusion. Further investigation could be done to help support this. For example, using a perfectly round ball such as a metal ball bearing, and a smooth metal slope. This would remove some of the friction and get closer results to the theoretical set. Also for further work the marble could be rolled down different texture slopes to investigate the effects of varying amounts of friction. This would provide additional information, which would help identify exactly how much friction does affect the results, compared to the theoretical set.

To extend the investigation you could do the same experiment but keep the slope at the same angle and change the mass of the ball. This would investigate how the mass effects the acceleration.

...read more.

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