1. Not finding help here? Sign up for a free 30min tutor trial with Chegg Tutors
    Dismiss Notice
Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Speed of sound - reaction time

  1. Nov 23, 2006 #1
    Today i did a simple expirement to calculate the speed of sound by placing someone 180 m away from me and telling the clap two wooden blocks. I timed the time it took between me seeing the blocks hit each other and when i heard the sound of the two blocks. Now in order for this to be as acurate as possible i want to remove the time it took me to react. So does anyone know anyway i can remove the time it takes me to react from the expirement ?
  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 23, 2006 #2
    Just estimate your reaction time and remove it from the time you got
  4. Nov 23, 2006 #3


    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    The reaction time should cancel because you take x seconds to start the watch after you see the blocks then x seconds when you hear the clap.
  5. Nov 23, 2006 #4
    yes kurdt it should cancel out but since i'm dealing with a time less then a second but if i looked at the blocks i would be more likely to start the stopwatch before the blocks hit and would be less likely to stop it on time. So in order to get over that problem i got someone to stand beside me and count to 3 while i looked at the ground and timed as accurately as possible.

    i will try to estimate it ponjavic but if it goes above like 0.2 of a second then it would mean my results would show that the outside temp. was like 50 degress celcius.
  6. Nov 23, 2006 #5
    You could get someone to stand next to you and clap when they see the wooden blocks hit, with you looking away. Then, you can measure the time between the 2 claps.
Know someone interested in this topic? Share this thread via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook

Have something to add?

Similar Discussions: Speed of sound - reaction time
  1. Speed of sound (Replies: 2)

  2. Speed of sound (Replies: 2)

  3. Speed of Sound (Replies: 5)

  4. Speed of Sound? (Replies: 6)