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

What factors influence the motion of a pendulum? How do those factors influence the motion of the pendulum?

Extracts from this document...


Investigating Pendulums

Research Question:

What factors influence the motion of a pendulum? How do those factors influence the motion of the pendulum?


I hypothesize that the pendulum would be influenced by more than one factor. Those factors are: mass, length of string and the angle from which the pendulum starts moving.

I predict that a heavier mass will result in a shorter period, while a longer string will result in a longer period. When the angle increases then the period will become shorter.





Length of String

Time for 1 cycle (period)

The swivel at the top

Mass at end of pendulum

Angle at which the pendulum starts

Background Information:



From the illustration above I can clearly identify the different components of this pendulum. At the bottom we have a mass, which is represented, by the circle in the image.

The mass is attached to a piece of string which then in turn is connected to a crossbar. The cross bar is stationary and does not move from one side to another like the mass and string does. The cross bar is supported by two stands left and right to give the pendulum enough stability so that it does not tip over while the mass is moving. The blue line indicates the normal line

...read more.


Do this 5 times and then take an averageRepeat this with 10, 20, 30, 90 and 135 degrees.


The following table will represent the results which we recorded for the three different experiments.  The red values will indicate averages

Experiment 1: Changing the length of the string


25cm String

50cm String

75 cm String

























The following table represent the results when we let the pendulum complete 5 cycles before taking the time









...read more.



I feel that the method which we followed were extremely simple to follow. This enabled us to work accurately. I do however want to express the need for two people to do the angle experiment because it does get a bit tricky when you have to measure the angle hold the pendulum steady and still do the timing. I would also like to warn people about the possible parallax mistake they could make when making the readings.

Our results are accurate but I would like to do the angle experiment again because I feel that there might be some values which are incorrect due to the parallax mistake. I did look straight at the protractor but from an angle.

For further experimentation I would recommend people to use a swivel for the pendulum to swing on rather than a crossbar. This would eliminate traces of friction and will improve the accuracy of the results.


Pendulum",Microsoft® Encarta® Encyclopedia 2001. © 1993-2000 Microsoft Corporation.

[1]"Pendulum",Microsoft® Encarta® Encyclopedia 2001. © 1993-2000 Microsoft Corporation.

...read more.

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Forces and Motion 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 Forces and Motion essays

  1. Period of Oscillation of a Simple Pendulum

    many times, the results could have been more accurate and would not have been so indifferent to the theoretical results. Additionally, the only way that mass can affect time of oscillation is by air resistance. That is, if the size of the mass alters each time.

  2. Investigating the Factors Which Affect the Motion of a Trolley Down an Inclined Plane

    The components I will keep consistent throughout will be: 1. Height of Ramp: As we are investigating if the mass of the trolley we must not increase or decrease the height, that would not give us accurate results. 2. Friction will slow down the speed at which the trolley travels.

  1. Mechanics of Motion

    To measure this first law we have several different things to consider. The first is distance or displacement they are measurements of how far a single body has traveled. Distance doesn't take into account the direction of movement and is therefore a scalar quantity.

  2. In this experiment I aim to find out how the force and mass affect ...

    Due to human error and reaction time, these results could not be relied on completely, but did give us a rough idea. If we were to conduct the experiment again, I would save time by just producing results using the computer system with light gate.

  1. Investigating factors which affect the period time of a simple pendulum.

    This again should influence the accuracy of my results. Table of averages: Length of string (cm) Period (secs) 50 1.45 40 1.28 30 1.13 20 0.91 10 0.61 Using the formula, T = 2 L g found in the Scientific Theory, I calculated the perfect results that should have been

  2. The Pendulum

    10) Because this is the preliminary experiment, we will only trial each measurement once. 11) We will then continue this over and over until we've done it once for every measurement. 12) After we have recorded all of our preliminary results, we will look at he ranges etc...to see if we need to make any changes to the experiment.

  1. Investigation of the factors affecting the time period of a simple pendulum

    The evidence obtained from my experiment supported my prediction that as the length of the pendulum increases, the period increases. Factors which could have affected the accuracy of my results include; - Error in measurement of angle of altitude. This angle proved hard to measure and it was hard to get the exact same angle for each result.

  2. In this Coursework, we were given the task of investigating some factors which affect ...

    2- The angle which will be 10 degrees. Dependant Variable: The dependant variable is the time it takes 10 periods to occur. In the experiment where I am varying the angle, the variables are as follows: Independent variable: I will be testing my experiment when the angle is at 10, 20, 30, 40, 50, 60, 70 & 80 degrees.

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