# 1996 AP Exam Question: Lab Situation with spring

• rvhockey
In summary, you need a spring scale that can handle a weight of more than 25N, a fulcrum, and some means of measuring torque.
rvhockey
A spring that can be assumed ideal hangs (vertically) from a stand.
a. You wish to determine the spring constant k of the spring.
i. What additional equipment do you need?
ii. What measurements would you make?
iii. How would k be determined from these measurements?
b. Assume the spring constant is 500 N/m. A 2 kg mass is attached to the end of the spring and released from rest. Determine the frequency of the oscillation of the mass.
c. Suppose that the spring is now used in a spring scale that is limited to a maximum value of 25N, but you would like to weigh an object of mass M that weighs more than 25N. You must use commonly available equipment and the spring scale to determine the weight without breaking the scale.
i. Draw a clear diagram that shows one way that the equipment could be used with the spring scale to determine the weight of the object.
ii. Explain how you would make the determination.

Fspring = kx
freq = 1/2pi * sqrt(k/m)

I did a and b easy, so you don't need to explain those to me. I'm lost without a paddle for c though, and the only thing I can think of is if you used a string, put the scale so it is parallel to the ground, put the string around a pulley, and put the mass perpendicular to the ground and use torque to figure of the weight. Other than that I'm stumped

Using a pulley system or a lever system and measuring the force from the generated torque is a good way to do it, i think.

Could you use 2 scales in parallel to measure the force/weight? That would be the simplest, I'd think.

I agree. Using two or more springs in parallel would distribute the weight evenly over the springs, so you wouldn't exceed the maximum scale reading allowed on each spring scale.

"now used in a spring scale that is limited to a maximum value of 25N, but you would like to weigh an object of mass M that weighs more than 25N. You must use commonly available equipment and the spring scale to determine the weight"

one spring scale but I think the torque thing is fine, thanks

but i am having a little trouble figuring out how i can determine the weight using torque.

Does anyone have any ideas?

Imagine a seesaw with one end connected to your unknown mass and the spring attached between the other end and a rigid floor. Now, what happens when you move the fulcrum (or pivot point)? If the maximum force that can be applied by the spring is 25N, how can you relate the position of the fulcrum to the maximum force applied at the other end?

## 1. What is the purpose of the 1996 AP Exam Question: Lab Situation with spring?

The purpose of this lab situation is to test students' understanding of Hooke's Law and the relationship between force and displacement in a spring.

## 2. What materials are needed for the 1996 AP Exam Question: Lab Situation with spring?

The materials needed for this lab situation include a spring, a meter stick, weights, a support stand, and a hook to attach the weights to the spring.

## 3. How is Hooke's Law applied in the 1996 AP Exam Question: Lab Situation with spring?

Hooke's Law is applied by measuring the displacement of the spring with different weights attached and using that data to calculate the spring constant, which is the slope of the force-displacement graph.

## 4. What is the expected outcome of the 1996 AP Exam Question: Lab Situation with spring?

The expected outcome is for students to accurately measure the spring constant and understand the relationship between force and displacement in a spring.

## 5. How can students improve their understanding of Hooke's Law through the 1996 AP Exam Question: Lab Situation with spring?

Students can improve their understanding by carefully following the instructions, accurately measuring the displacement and force, and analyzing the data to calculate the spring constant. They can also repeat the experiment with different springs to see how the results vary.

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