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Homework Help: Finding mass of paperclip using Millikans theory

  1. Feb 20, 2008 #1
    Hey guy new to the forum and am in need of some help.
    Im trying to figure out a lab that I started in class.

    Our group meusured the mass of 70 envelopes with random numbers of paperclips in each.
    Our task is to use millikans theory, that every meausurement is a whole number multiple of 1.6x10 to the -19, to find the mass of one paperclip.

    Any help would be great.
  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 20, 2008 #2
    Assuming all the paperclips weighed the same, wouldn't it be fair to say that the mass of an envelop filled will a random number of paper clips will have a mass equal to the sum of the mass of the envelop and an integer multiple of the mass of a single paperclip? In otherwords, if the mass of the envelope is "e", the mass of a single paper clip is "p", and the number of paper clips in the envelope is "n", then the total mass can be represented by e + np.

    Because "e" is the same for every envelope, and "p" is the same for every envelope, the only difference is in "n". This means the mass of one envelope compared to the mass of another differs only by an integer multiple of "p". Do you understand so far?
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