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Givin it another try

  1. Mar 26, 2005 #1
    Does anyone have any idea, even a tiny little one, of an experiment that could be made in order to investigate the factors that affect the distance travelled by a plastic tub when propelled along a horizontal surface? :/
    It shouldnt be anything too complex.. any ideas will be *more* than welcomed.
  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 26, 2005 #2
    Friction, air resistance (perhaps with respect to temparature, if you have sensitive apparati), radius of the tube.
  4. Mar 26, 2005 #3
    Well, there are only two factors which affect the distance: The initial velocity, and the frictional force.

    To accurately test how initial velocity effects the motion, you need to deliver a precise amount of momentum to the tub. For this, I would roll a ball down an incline and cause it to have an inelastic collision (stick together) with the tub. Then, use conservation of momentum to calculate the initial velocity.

    To do an accurate measurement of the frictional force, use the same incline but this time but this time with the tub on the incline. Than, slowly increase the angle of the incline, while nudging the tub; use the angle at which it slides to calculate the magnitude of the friction force.
  5. Mar 26, 2005 #4
    Thank you both, SO SO MUCH!!

    It sounds exactly like what I needed.. thanks a lot again.
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