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physics lab report. Aim To determine the coefficient of static friction (μs) between a wooden block and a granite plane

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To determine the coefficient of static friction (μs) between a wooden block and a granite plane.

Data Collection

Table (1): hanging mass needed to move the (wooden block + masses).


Mass of wooden block + masses (M1) (g)


Mass of hanging masses (M2) (g)














Data Processing and Presentation

  1.        Coefficient of static friction (μs)

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image09.png                        Weight                                Tension (T)


image11.pngimage12.png                        Hanging masses

                                                Weight (W2)

Figure (1): the setup of the experiment and the free body diagrams of the hanging masses and the (wooden block + masses)


M1: mass of wooden block + masses                                

M2: mass of hanging masses

N: normal force

fr: frictional force

W1: weight of wooden block + masses

W2: weight of hanging masses


g: acceleration due to gravity

μs: coefficient of static friction

At the instant of motion:

                                            Frictional force (fr) = Weight(W2)

                                                                       fr  =  W2(substitute fr = μs* N)

                                                               (μs) (N) = (M2) (g)         (substitute N=W1)

                                                            (μs) (W1)

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  1. Placing a photogate connected to a lamp or bell exactly in front of the (block + masses). When the block moves, however slightly, the lamp would light up or the bell would start ringing to indicate the motion of the (block + masses).
  1. Making sure the scale of the balance is always viewed at a right angle to avoid parallax error.
  1. Conducting more trials and taking the average result in order to minimize the affects of random error.

...read more.

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