Physical Science Lab #5

Topics: Energy, Potential energy, Conservation of energy Pages: 4 (812 words) Published: April 19, 2002
Physical Science lab #5


The goal of this experiment is to develop a theory, which allows us to understand the motion of a marble.


Wooden roller coaster, marble, ruler, timer, clamp, physics stand.


In this experiment, we are finding the Conservation of Energy. Energy is neither created nor destroyed. Energy is summed up into two different properties: Potential energy and Kinetic energy. The law of Energy states that:

Total Energy = Potential Energy + Kinetic Energy
Em = Ep + Ek

Also, the equations for Potential energy and Kinetic energy are stated to get the Total Energy. They are respectively:

Ep = mghandEk = ½ (m)v2

The Conservation of Energy states that energy is always constant. If potential energy increases then kinetic energy decreases and vice versa.
In this experiment we positioned a marble ball on a wooden roller coaster positioned on a physics stand in the sixth hole. Throughout the experiment, we used an electronic timer to record the time of the marble where it passed through the light beam of its clamp. We positioned the clamp at a certain point on the roller coaster and measured the distance from the marble to the clamp; the height of the clamp; and finally the time the ball traveled through the clamp. After we recorded these different figures we calculated the speed of the marble from the given distance traveled and the time. We repeated the step 14 times, then proceeded to graph the speed and the height. Next, we took the measurements of position of the clamp, height, and speed and calculated the potential energy, the kinetic energy, and the total energy. Total energy calculated as mentioned before. Potential energy is taking the mass (m) which is 28.1g times gravity (g) which is 9.8 m/s2 times the height. Kinetic energy is one-half times the mass (m) times velocity (v2). Finally we graphed the...
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