# SHM Varying spring constant

1. Apr 20, 2012

### shaun_598

1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data
Ive worked out all of my values for my shm assignment. In the table of results i have found that my spring constant decreases with load applied.

Im stuggling to come with a good reason for this.

Number Mass (kg) Spring displacement (m) Spring constant (N/m)
1 0.05 0 n/a
2 0.1 0.0195 50.31
3 0.15 0.039 37.73
4 0.2 0.061 32.16
5 0.25 0.081 30.28

3. The attempt at a solution

So far all i can come up with is twist in the spring. That the greater load had a greater spring displacement and therefore any twist when the sping would be oscilating would be exaggerated.

Any help would be appreciated thanks

2. Apr 20, 2012

### Staff: Mentor

What exactly was the procedure for determining the values in your table? What comprises the mass for each entry?

3. Apr 20, 2012

### MrWarlock616

The table is actually from this thread.

4. Apr 20, 2012

### Staff: Mentor

Without knowing from an eye-witness how the experiment was conducted we can only speculate on what might cause the observed variation. As a first guess I would say that the recorded mass values are actually on the heavy side by some constant offset (systematic error?). Subtract about 0.05kg from each mass value and take another look at the results.