Free Fall Measurement of the Gravitational Acceleration

Topics: Newton's laws of motion, Gravitation, Standard gravity Pages: 2 (421 words) Published: May 9, 2013
In this experiment Newton’s Second Law of Motion was measured with the use of the gravitational acceleration g on Earth by applying a free fall process.

The objective of this experiment is to validate Newton’s Second Law of motion. In experimenting the Law the measurement of acceleration of gravity was used by measuring the distance a dropped ball travels for a specific amount of time.

First, measurements were taken of the distance from the stairway from the third floor to the ground and then from the fourth floor to the ground. The two points would be recorded as y which would remain constant. A small rubber ball was dropped from y using the same point of release. This process was repeated ten times. Then a whiffle ball was dropped from the same location ten times. The corresponding times of the falls were recorded. Next, the software Graphical Analysis was opened allowing data tables to be set up. Two columns were created. The first column was the data from the whiffle ball and the second was the solid ball’s data. Two graphs were composed. They each consisted of 10 measurements of data of the time it took the falling ball to hit the ground.

Results/ Data Analysis

Δt of Solid Ball:
= 0.12175
= 0.039
g exp Solid Ball
= 2(13.66)
= 13
= 13 m/s2 - 9.81 m/s2
= 3.19 m/s2
Percentage Discrepancy:
= 13 m/s2 - 9.81 m/s2 х 100
9.81 m/s2

= 32.52 %
Δt of Whiffle Ball:
= 0.09167
= 0.029
g exp Whiffle Ball
= 2(13.66)
= 8.53
= 8.53 m/s2 - 9.81 m/s2
= 1.28 m/s2
Percentage Discrepancy:
= 8.53 m/s2 - 9.81 m/s2 х 100
9.81 m/s2
= 13.05 %

The percent discrepancy for both balls was slightly...
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