• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

To investigate the factors affecting the resistance of a piece of wire.

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Natasha Brilliant

Investigation into the Factor(s) that Affect the Resistance of a Piece of Wire

The purpose of this investigation is to investigate the factors affecting the resistance of a piece of wire.  In order to investigate these factors I will need to carry out a series of experiments.  I will also need to research some background information using secondary sources.  I will then need to consider the equipment that I will use and the number of readings I will take for each experiment.  I will need to finally try to ensure that my results are as reliable and precise as possible while considering the safety aspect of my experiments.

Electrical resistance is a quantity which measures the amount of opposition a circuit or individual component provides to the electric current (charges) trying to flow.  The amount of resistance in an electrical circuit determines the amount of current flowing for any given voltage applied to the circuit.

The unit of resistance is the ohm, discovered by the German physicist, Georg Ohm.  One ohm is the amount of resistance that limits the current to one ampere when one volt is applied to it.

...read more.

Middle

image03.png

Some wires have more useful properties than others do.  An example of this is constantan wire which is an alloy of copper and nickel and whose resistance is unaffected by temperature.  image00.png

image01.png

  1. Temperature

Temperature will affect resistance I think (except in the case of the constantan wire – see ‘Type of Wire’ above) because as the wire heats up, the electrons will gain kinetic energy and start to vibrate.  This will make it harder for them to ‘travel’ along the wire making the resistance higher.  During my experiments I may find that I have to pause so that they wire can cool down so that it doesn’t affect the resistance too much.       image03.pngimage02.png

For my investigation, I am going to investigate two of the above factors thoroughly so that I may come to a conclusion about what affects the resistance of a piece of wire.  I have chosen to investigate the length of the wire and the cross sectional area of the wire.

In my investigation, I am going to use two different methods to investigate each factor.  In order to investigate

...read more.

Conclusion

Current =   Voltage  _        or        I = V

                                    Resistance                      R

 Rearranged it gives us:

                        Resistance = Voltage        or        R = V

                                         Current                        I


Preliminary Experiments

Before I conduct my experiments, I needed to do some preliminary work to determine which wires I am going to use.  I had six options to choose from:

Constantan or Nichrome wire in the any of the following thickness:

   0.28 mm or

    0.40 mm or

0.56 mm

I did a similar experiment for length as detailed above for all six wires but I only took five readings (at every 10 cm) because I do not need such detailed results.  I did not repeat the experiment.  I then chose the thickness that offers the biggest range of readings, as it will be clearer to analyse my results if they are not too similar.  Overleaf are my results.

The graph clearly shows that the Nichrome wire with a 0.28mm cross sectional area has the biggest range (2.3 Ω to 9.9 Ω giving a range of 7.6 Ω).  I will therefore use this wire in my length experiments.  However, if time permits, I will test as many of the six wires as possible meaning that I will have more results to compare and analyse.  

...read more.

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Electricity and Magnetism section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Electricity and Magnetism essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    The factors affecting the resistance of a metalic conductor.

    4 star(s)

    are evenly spaced but stationary in the hallway. This would represent a cold wire. Since the wire is cold the protons are not vibrating much so the electrons can run between them fairly rapidly. As the conductor (hallway) heats up, the protons start vibrating and moving slightly out of position.

  2. An experiment to investigate the factors affecting the electrical resistance of a wire

    I have used different lengths because it can increase the reliability of the investigation so the data will be more accurate. The gradient graph is the gradient of all best fit lines against the length of wire. I have also checked the diameter of the wire at different lengths by

  1. Discover the factors affecting resistance in a conductor.

    Therefore we can conclude that the wire has a resistance to the current. The greater the resistance, the more voltage that is required to move a current through the wire. A long thin wire has more resistance than a short thick one of the same material.1 Silver is the best

  2. An investigation into the factors affecting the resistance of a wire.

    I can further support my hypothesis because I know from my scientific knowledge and research that: Electric current is the movement of electrons through a conductor. In this experiment a metal wire (Nichrome will be the conductor). So when resistance is high, conductivity is low.

  1. To investigate how the length (mm) and the cross-sectional (mm2) area of a wire ...

    The second two columns will record the average current and voltage that I have observed. This can be done simply by adding the three values for current and voltage at each length and then dividing the two sums by three.

  2. The aim of this investigation is to investigate the factors affecting the resistance of ...

    A long and thin pipe offers more resistance than a short and thick one or a pipe that has obstructions. Similarly, the resistance of a wire is dependent upon several factors, including its length, cross-sectional area, temperature, type of material (resistivity).

  1. Factors affecting Resistance of a wire

    I will then turn the power pack onto 6 volts and take the readings again off each device. I will continue to move the crocodile clip further along the wire at every 10cm and at the 3 different voltages until I have 10 lengths - 10cm, 20cm, 30cm, 40cm, 50cm, 60cm, 70cm, 80cm, 90cm & 100cm.

  2. Investigating the factors affecting the resistance in a wire

    and an unlimited range of lengths (within reason, as we only had limited amounts of test wire). The power in the circuit was generated by a 24 volt power pack.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work