- #1

FaraDazed

- 347

- 2

I knew of Hooke's law before hand, F=-kx, but that was it, kind of lacking knowledge with the rest of theory that is involved.

For the first part we simply added masses onto the spring, one by one (0.05kg incremenets) and measured the extension. Plotted a graph of the weight of the masses versus the extension and then drew a line of best fit. Found the spring constant by taking the reciprocal of the gradient.

For the second part, we did the same thing by adding masses incrementally (in 0.05kg increments) but this time we lifted the masses slightly and let them bounce and we timed 30 oscillations (to get better accuracy of one period). We then calculated what ω^2 is by (2π/T)^2 and plotted a graph of the reciprocal of the masses (1/m) against ω^2 and drew a best fit line. And found the gradient to get a different value for k the spring constant to compare with the previous value.

I just don't understand how the reciprocal of the gradient in part one gets you the spring constant and in part two, which I especially don't understand how doing what we did provided us with a another value for the spring constant.

Any help with a general understanding of the theory behind this experiement would be very much appreciated. Merry Christmas :)