Ball rolling down ramp off a table

  • #1
I have to do an important experiment tomorrow. In physics, we have this setup:

We have a ramp (we don't know how long, we dont know the angle), and we put it on a normal counter top with the 'exit' end up to a meter from the edge.

We place a camera film capsule off the edge of the table, and we have to try to calculate it just right so the ball falls in.

Since I don't know the exact measurements, I can say this: The ball will be a solid metal ball, probably about 1/2 the volume of a ping pong ball. We will be using a normal countertop and a table probably about 1m high. I don't know the exact measurements of any of these, but to be prepared, I pose you this question(s): What formulas will I have to know? About how much should I take counter friction into account?

Answers and Replies

  • #2
You will just need to work out the projectory of the ball as it leaves the ramp. Use suvat equations to work out the speed and acceleration ect of the ball and you can easily work it out.

You may also want to do some test rolls to work the values out - i.e. roll the ball down and measure the time it takes and the distance it travels before it hits the floor. Since the incline of the ramp, the mass of the ball and the value of gravity will remain constant, you will then be able to say how far the cup should be away from the ramp to catch the ball.

Then it should just be a case of making sure you roll the ball in a straight line.
  • #3
Yeah, I wish. That's the catch. If the ball touches the floor at any time during the experiment, its an automatic zero. We get one shot and one shot only.