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What Factors Affect the Period of Oscillation of a pendulum?

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What Factors Affect the Period of Oscillation of a pendulum?


In this experiment we are trying to find if there is any relation be found between the weigh tied to the end of the string and the oscillation and also in a second experiment the relation to the length of string to the period of oscillation.

The first experiment

In the first experiment we are seeing if there is any relation between the weight tied to the end of the string and the period of oscillation. To conduct this experiment I shall be tying a piece of string to a stand and adding the appropriate weight to the string and releasing the string at approximately 45° and then timing for 10 oscillations and then recording the results on a table. The experiment will be done twice so to check for any error and to calculate a rough average then I shall divide it by 10 to find out the average time for 1 oscillation. The reason why I’m finding10 oscillations first is because it is hard to time 1 oscillation with an ordinary timer. Then I shall change the weights and repeat till I fill the table appropriately.  


In this experiment I will need…

One stand

One piece of string 20cm approximately

Various weights

Meter ruler

        One timer


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Bellow is the graph I made showing the weight attached when compared to the average time taken for one oscillation

What the graph shows and what I can conclude from it.

Now as you can see the line of best fit is spoiled in this graph. This is because really this graph is looking too closely so the graph seem like there is no real correlation to the graph. When you look at the graph the range is only from 1.13 to 1.16 that is pretty small margin of error and also you have to consider that we were using a manual stopwatch so we have to account for human error.

I can conclude from this that the graph is looking too closely which only makes it look like there is no correlation to the bob and the time it takes for one oscillation. While really there is a strong relation

So when I look back at my prediction I can honestly say that my prediction was correct which was that the all the results would be similar and as the graph show the results are.

Evaluation of the experiment

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Any unusual results

In this experiment there is not any really unusual results at all. None results that really sway off the line of best fit. The only reason I can give for the results that slightly sway off the line of best fit is because of human error.

What improvement would I have liked to make to the method if given the chance.

To get more reliable result I would like to have an electronic stopwatch that could stop and start automatically to reduce human error. Also I would have preferred if I could find a better way of increasing the string length and also a more accurate way of measuring the string because it was hard to make the string accurately.  Also I would prefer if I could increase the string length in 5cm or less rather than in 10cm to get a more wider range of results also repeating the test a couple of more time would have helped as well because that way I could have made more accurate averages.


Original information that I previously know about pendulums I read from the book called Fatal Forces from the series called Horrible Science, which was written by Nick Arnold. The animation was found on Microsoft Encarta Standard edition 2002.

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