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Motion in a Circular Orbit

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Introduction

Lab no. 6 - Title: Motion in a Circular Orbit Aim: to verify the expression for the centripetal force Equipment: rubber bung, glass tube, string, weights, paper clip, meter ruler, scales Fig. 1: experiment in action. Required Knowledge: Linerization of the graph by deriving from Centripetal Force formula, F=mg, and drawings Derivation: Data Collection and Processing. Collected Data Trial M (kg) Trial A (s) Trial B (s) Trial C (s) Avg. (s) (s) l (cm) (cm) 1 0.118 0.400 0.484 0.478 0.454 0.4 21.5 1 2 0.178 0.403 0.407 0.403 0.404 0.4 21.5 1 3 0.245 0.369 0.366 0.360 0.365 0.4 21.5 1 4 0.315 0.319 0.344 0.360 0.341 0.4 21.5 1 5 0.380 0.276 0.254 0.280 0.270 0.4 21.5 1 6 0.442 0.280 0.249 0.270 0.266 0.4 21.5 1 Calculated Trial () ...read more.

Middle

Despite having paid utmost attention to the experiment's accuracy by, for example, using 10 loops instead of 1 to find the period, or having 3 trials, and averaging the results, gravity was still not close enough to approximate that the formula for centripetal force is proven using this experiment. However, there are some changes that could have changed the outcome. Firstly, there are some errors which could be fixed. While spinning the rubber bung, I was counting the times it flew past my eyes, this may have caused subjectiveness, or could have just trusted my judgement too much. This could have been fixed by adding another person to count the rotations. This same problem was caused while timing the results. ...read more.

Conclusion

Finally, I feel that this experiment was made on too small of a scale to be accurate. While uncertainties of the experiment will be larger on a larger scale, they will be smaller in proportion than the uncertainties of the small experiments. I think this could be remedied by having a 250 gram rubber bung (or similar object), and a length "l" of at least 50 cm... perhaps even 1 meter. Also, the bottom mass, "M" should be larger: from 500 grams to a kilogram. While we would only have 1 group rather than 2, doing this would probably help be more precise because experiments done a larger scale are more precise (one of their characteristics. Timmy Ivo Bendi� --- 3MM --- 25.I.2009 ...read more.

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