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To investigate how, using a variable of length, the resistance of a wire is affected.

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Introduction

Simon Westwood

Resistance of a wire investigation

Aim

To investigate how, using a variable of length, the resistance of a wire is affected.

Prediction

I predict that, as the length of the wire increases, so will the resistance.

Scientific knowledge:

When the wire is shorter, there will be less metal particles for the electrons to collide with, and so less resistance.  As the length increases, there will be more metal particles to collide with within the wire, and so there will be more resistance.

Method

I will cut over 100cm of constantan wire.  I will then press a paper clip into each end of a metre ruler and rap the wire around each paper clip until the wire is taught.  I will connect two crocodile clips to the wire with the desired distance between them.  The crocodile

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Middle

1

0.04

30

1

0.05

20

1

0.06

10

1

0.09

From the trial run I realised that using 1 volt does not give good current readings as they are not spread out enough to be accurate.  Therefore I will need to use a higher voltage and I

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Conclusion

Evaluation

Overall, I feel that I gained very accurate results from the experiment, but there are always things that can be changed to make the results more accurate and less room for error.  There were problems which I encountered during the experiment that could have made my results less accurate.  One major problem was the fact that the wire could slack and so I may not have been reading the current for exactly the length of wire that I wished to.  This could have been avoided by cutting each length of wire out separately, instead of just sliding the crocodile clips closer together.  This would have given me the reading for the exact length of wire each time.

Other experiments could also be done to test other hypotheses.  For example I would investigate how using different types of wire affects the resistance, by using other types of wire such as nichrome wire.

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