Helicopter Experiment

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Karan Madan IB Physics SL Sam Edgecombe 2012.04.22


Paper Helicopter Experiment
Introduction: The paper helicopter experiment involves designing a paper helicopter and by changing a certain variable acquire data for a selected variable. The essential part in this practical is to plan the experiment in detail in order to obtain substantial data. Firstly we have to identify our controlled variables which will be kept constant throughout the experiment. By carrying out this practical it is ideal that students become familiar with the fundamental concepts of experimental planning, design and analysis. Above all, the scientific method should become acquainted with by the students. Research question: How does the time taken for a paper helicopter, dropped from a specific height above the ground, aimed to reach the ground, depend upon a change in mass? In other words, for simplification, how does a change in mass of a paper helicopter affect the time taken for the helicopter to reach ground level from a certain height? Apparatus:        Stopwatch Thick card paper (card stock) Paper clips Scissors Pen Tape Measuring tape (metric ruler)

Variables: Independent variable: The independent variable, the thing I will change throughout the experiment, will be the mass of the helicopter. This will be done by adding paper clips to the tail of the helicopter. By adding mass the dependent variable will be affected. The mass of each paperclip should be measured on a scale, and then be recorded. 7 different masses, of the helicopter of course, should be used. This will produce a large range of data which will be good when trying to make some kind of conclusion. So essentially mass is added onto the helicopter as the number of paperclips increase. Controlled variable(s): These are the elements that I have chosen to keep constant throughout the experiment:  Distance (height) from which the helicopter is dropped

The same distance from which the helicopter...
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