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Physics Friction Lab Report

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Coefficient of Friction Lab

Planning B –

Apparatus:

  •  Pulley (minimum friction)
  •  String (minimum friction)
  •  Sandpaper sheet
  •  Wooden block
  •  Various masses (5g, 10g, 20g.. etc)
  •  Mass-hook (holder)
  •  Sticky tape
  •  Electronic scale (one per class)

Method:

  1. Gather all necessary materials listed above
  2. Using the electronic scale, measure the mass of the wooden block and record this, taking into account uncertainties where applicable.
  3. Attach the string to the wooden block, and the other end to a mass-hook.
  4. Place the sheet of sandpaper underneath the block and tape the sheet firmly in place on the table using sticky-tape (also note the exact position of the block on the sheet as we will try to keep that constant throughout)
  5. Screw on the adjustable pulley at one edge of a laboratory table
  6. Hang the mass hook off the table, using the mass pulley – if this already causes the block to move, then place a small weight on top of the block.  You set-up should look the following:
...read more.

Middle

Trial

Normal Reaction Force /N

Force of friction /N

±0.05 N

Average Force of Friction /N

±0.15 N

Friction Coefficient

Avg. Coefficient

± 0.05

1

2.25

1.74

1.74

0.78

0.77

2

1.73

0.77

3

1.74

0.77

Test 3

Trial

Normal Reaction Force /N

Force of friction /N

±0.05 N

Average Force of Friction /N

±0.15 N

Friction Coefficient

Avg. Coefficient

± 0.05

1

3.25

2.51

2.51

0.77

0.77

2

2.51

0.77

3

2.49

0.77

Test 4

Trial

Normal Reaction Force /N

...read more.

Conclusion

image03.png

        Note that this will give use the static coefficient of friction, which is different from the dynamic coefficient, but is what we were instructed to find in this particular lab.  To find our average coefficient of static friction, taking into account all the tests and all the trials, we would have (0.76 + 0.77 + 0.77 + 0.78 + 0.79) / 5 = image02.png

image02.png = 0.77 ± 0.05

        On the following page you will find a graph that plots the frictional force Ffr versus the normal reaction force R.  There is a clear linear relationship between the two forces, and this line should, ideally, pass through the origin.  

Uncertainties, and moreover, systematic error, have caused this line shift. For example, the friction of between the puller and the string meant that not all of the weight of the mass was transferred to pull the block, but since this happened every time, the relationship still holds although it is not from the origin.  Moreover, as we continued carrying out this experiment, one must keep in mind that the sandpaper was getting more and more “worn”, which reduces friction for the consequential trials.

...read more.

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