# Investigating the factors related to the crater formed by a falling object.

IB Physics SL 2

Leo Tran

1/17/12

W2

Mr. Chorman

Design Lab

Investigating the factors related to the crater formed by a falling object.

Research

The aim of the experiment is to investigate the relationship between the height from which a ball is being dropped on sand and the diameter of the crater it formed from its impact on the sand. This will be done by dropping the ball from fixed heights and then measuring the diameter of the crater formed for each height using an accurate meter scale.

If the drop height of the ball is increased then the diameter of the crater will also increase. As the drop height is increased, the potential energy of the ball will also increase since PE = mass * g * height. As a result, the force of impact of the ball on the surface will increase because all the potential energy will be changed into kinetic energy (velocity) of the ball just before its impact on the sand. This increase in the force of impact will move more sand sideways and downwards resulting in the formation of a bigger bowl shaped crater, hence the increase in diameter.

Variables

• The independent variable is the drop height of the ball.
• The dependent variable is the diameter of the crater formed by the impact of the ball on the sand.
• The controlled variables include the same snooker ball, same type of sand, and keeping the sand parallel to the ground level.

Apparatus

• A snooker ball
• A meter scale
• A box
• Sand

Method

• Measure the height from which you drop the ball (distance between the bottom of the ball and the surface level of the sand) and measure the diameter of the crater formed ...

#### Here's what a teacher thought of this essay

This report suggests a good investigation by choosing appropriate variables. However, due to the large uncertainties and small number of data points, an incorrect interpretation of the data has resulted. It is not a linear relationship as stated even though it appears to be. 3 stars.