# Centripetal acceleration in a roller coaster loop

## Homework Statement

I performed an experiment with a plastic tube and a ball. The tube was shaped into a roller coaster track with a circular vertical loop of diameter 0.12 m. I have to calculate the centripetal acceleration of the ball while in motion within the loop. I have only studied uniform motion related with centripetal acceleration, however in this case the velocity of the ball changes as it passes through the loop. To obtain a more accurate result should I,
a) get the average of some velocities and determine the average velocity of the ball when it passes through the loop.
or
b) use one of the points to determine the instantaneous centripetal acceleration.

Thank you.

N/A

## Answers and Replies

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rock.freak667
Homework Helper
If your experiment warranted that the speed remain constant, then do the average. From how it sounds, that is how your experiment went about.

SammyS
Staff Emeritus