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Homework Help: Some possible ideas for a Physics essay on the damping of a towed trailer (4000 words essay)

  1. Jun 18, 2017 #1
    I want to do an investigation on how the damping of a trailer when it is moved horizontally. I saw a video of a toy car with a trailer and someone changing the weight distribution on the trailer. This change led to a big difference in the oscillation patterns of the trailer when moved. (the video is ).

    The investigation has to be 4000 words long and must be very detailed and specific to 1 topic. However, I am struggling with finding the equations to investigate. To complete this assignment, I need several sources to read through (which I'm more than happy to do). However, I can't seem to pinpoint which branch of physics I am looking at and can't find any research papers on this topic.

    Is it possible to model this problem using a physical pendulum? I could change the mass distribution on a pendulum and measure the time it takes for it to stop moving. This way it would be easier to find research papers about it online. I've also had suggestions that this problem may relate to the degree of vibrations and control systems.

    In conclusion, I was wondering about the Physics behind the video and would like to investigate this further. Anyone know where to start?
  2. jcsd
  3. Jun 18, 2017 #2


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