In physics MC 503, we are required to write a paper twice a semester summarizing the previous four to six labs. In this, the first paper, I am writing about the previous four labs. As each lab comes around each week I start to get excited. I know that the lab is going to help me understand or comprehend some form of formula I am learning in the chapters. As we do one lab and look back upon the previous. You may notice that the foregoing lab is a part of a current lab. Such as in acceleration due to gravity is the base for the projectile motion lab.
The first lab I am going to start with is the, projectile motion…catch, lab. The purpose of the projectile motion lab is to collect data on the time of flight and range of various projectiles and to then calculate the initial speed, the angle of launch, and the maximum height achieved. The first step was to get a projectile, in which I used a tennis ball. I went outside in my yard and threw the ball to my friend. I recorded data consisting of: time of flight, and the range in which I threw the ball. The time of flight was taken with a stopwatch. I used paces to record the distance between my friend and myself. I threw the ball three times for each of four distances.
I enjoyed this lab for the reason that it gave me an actual visual to compare all of the formulas for finding projectile motion too. It makes it a lot easier to do the problem when you do not have problems visualizing what you’re trying to figure out.
In the third lab, acceleration due to gravity, we learned about one of the numbers that is repeatedly used in a physics class. We learned about the acceleration of an object falling near the surface of the earth. This acceleration is usually about 9.81 m/ssquared. In this lab we attempted to find lab values for the acceleration from gravity using three different levels and sophistication. In the first trial and method we used a two-meter stick and dropped a tennis ball from varying heights, and timed it. We only got a chance to do one other method and that was using a sparker timer. We used premade ribbons from a sparker timer and configured the timing of the drops. We found velocity and acceleration due to gravity.
For the second lab, velocity and acceleration, we found just that. We used an air track and a glider. We used both of these tools in order to measure how long the glider take for the whole trip, how long it takes for the last half of the trip, how long it takes for the last quarter, and the last eighth of the trip. In each case, we divided the distance covered by the time taken to get an average speed for the partial trip. The final speed of the glider for the small section had to be guessed.
These labs all have a purpose, and I know that Professor Shaw had a reason for selecting these specific topics to cover. Not that they are both interesting and fun, but that they serve in an educational purpose.
Laboratory Paper #1
Word Count: 552