Kinematics: Introducing Graphical and Mathematical Model Building with Uniform Motion

The purpose of this experiment is to collect and use experimental data from objects raveling with uniform motion to build graphical and mathematical models for the system and to use these models to make predictions that are then experimentally tested.

In this experiment we investigated a system in which an object moves at constant speed. We were given the following to help carry out this experiment: a 2-meter stick, 2-meter steel track, wooden launcher, 1” ball bearing, stopwatch (or timer), washers, and tape.

After reading the procedure, the first thing we did was marking a spot on the launch ramp with tape, where we could release the ball at the same spot every time. By placing and releasing the ball bearing from the desired marked spot on the launcher, we were able to achieve (theoretically) a constant speed as the ball bearing starts on and goes along the metal track. With the timer and 2-meter stick we are able to calculate the time the ball is at at a certain position at a certain time. By doing this we were able to establish a coordinate system. Our results are as follows:

TRIAL 1

Time (s) Distance (cm)

1 44

2 84.8

3 121.5

4 152.3

5 180

Slope= 34 cm/s

TRIAL 2

Time (s) Distance (cm)

1 42

2 81.5

3 123.3

4 151

5 175

Slope= 33.25 cm/s

Using our results from the charts we are able to produce a graphical model. Since we’ve done the experiment for two trials and have gotten a range of results, it is more logical to use a best-fit curve which may not cross any of our collected data points because it will give a better idea of where the range is.

By using the formula Y=mx+b or Distance=mx+b we can calculate the distance the ball traveled. Our group failed to calculate it correctly due to having a “b” that was around 7. Since “b” should be around or close to 0 we were not able to produce an accurate result. Some Sources of Error for the...