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IYPT 2008 question on tip-cat

  1. Dec 14, 2011 #1
    1. Tipcat:
    Place a small wooden stick over the edge of a desk. Hit the end of the stick overhanging the table so that it flies away. How is the flight distance related to the relevant parameters? What is the condition for a maximum horizontal distance?


    This question seemed intresting so i did an experiment on it... My aim was to find how varying the ratio of the stick on and off the table will vary the horizontal distance travelled.
    Data collected so far:
    ratio->distance
    1.40->119.4
    1.86->128.4
    2.00->109.8
    2.33->115.8
    2.53->113
    2.75->88.2

    Observation: the stick flies in a projectile motion and it rotates as well along its centre of mass

    This data didn't seem to provide any linear relation. I tried to study the topic of moment of inertia but got no help. Please help me suggest how to tackle the problem as i can't figure out the physics involved in this... which topic of physics to read? and how to frame a free body diagram for it?
    Note: maybe my data is wrong, but i still am not able to identify the physics involved
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 14, 2011 #2
    Hhhmmm...I am having a hard time with the ratio...I would have used fraction, isntead.

    Question: What are you using to hit the stick? Constant weight that falls from a fixed position? Or your finger?

    And yeah, you are going to need a free body diagram to find your forces (weights of both sections of the stick, plus external force) and their corresponding distances to the pivot point (edge of the table). Duration of contact, amount of work, etc.

    Also, it would probably be nice is you could rise the stick above the table and still provide a way to support...I don't know how wide or long the stick is and how smooth it is, but eventually, there might be a small component of resistance to take off due to air having to snick under the stick...this is a lot more clear when you put a piece of paper on top of the stick , of course, just so you know what I am speculating on.
     
  4. Dec 15, 2011 #3
    Thnx for replying,

    Stick is 30 cm long and is cylinderical in shape
    A spring with its spring constant known is used to apply a contant force.
    I have attachted pictures of my experimental setup please have a look.

    There is a concern regarding the setup-> I did shift the position of the spring (brought it closer to the edge of the table)

    Initally the spring was 6.5 cm away from the edge of the table.
    1)At this position of the spring i placed the stick such that 2cm of it lies beyond the spring.
    2)Keeping spring at its place i moved the stick so as to vary the distance of it beyond the impact point (i took values 4cm and 6cm)

    AFTER THIS I SHIFTED THE SPRING CLOSER TO THE TABLE= 6cm from the edge
    then i repeated the procedure 1 and 2

    Concern is that the ratio i measure is only for the lenght of the stick on and off the table and does not take into account the shift of spring IS THE GOING TO CAUSE PROBLEMS?
     

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