# What Are the Results of the Millikan Oil Drop Experiment?

• lulu888
In summary, the Millikan oil drop experiment was a scientific experiment conducted in 1909 by Robert Millikan to determine the value of the electron's charge. Tiny oil droplets were sprayed into a chamber and exposed to an electric field, and by measuring their rate of movement, Millikan was able to calculate the charge on each droplet and compare it to the charge of an electron. This experiment was significant as it provided the first accurate measurement of the charge of an electron, confirming the existence of subatomic particles and contributing to modern atomic theory. Millikan faced challenges in accurately measuring the droplet's movement, but his results were highly influential in the scientific community and helped advance our understanding of particles.
lulu888
Homework Statement
Hello, recently I have done the Millikan Oil Drop Experiment. I am required to determine my own fundamental charge and compare it with the accepted value of 1.6x10^-19. However, I am struggling greatly because I do not know how to do that. I did the experiment 10 times. The mass, gravity, and distance remained the same throughout. My voltages were different though. How do I calculate my own fundamental charge with this set of data? I am not sure how I would use the equation with 10 different voltage values.
Relevant Equations
q=mgd/v
mass: 1.57x10^-19 kg
voltages: 400, 457, 384, 369, 400, 355, 369, 436, 384, 369
distance: 0.1m
gravity: 9.81 m/s^2

Welcome to PhysicsForums, lulu.

## 1. What is the purpose of the Millikan oil drop experiment?

The purpose of the Millikan oil drop experiment was to determine the charge of an electron, which was a significant contribution to the understanding of atomic structure.

## 2. How did Millikan conduct the oil drop experiment?

Millikan conducted the experiment by spraying tiny oil droplets into a chamber and then observing their motion as they fell. He then applied an electric field to the chamber and measured how the droplets were affected by the field.

## 3. What were the results of the Millikan oil drop experiment?

The results of the experiment showed that the charge on the oil droplets was always a multiple of a single, fundamental unit of charge, which was determined to be the charge of an electron. This allowed for the calculation of the exact value of the electron's charge.

## 4. What was the significance of the Millikan oil drop experiment?

The Millikan oil drop experiment was significant because it provided the first accurate measurement of the charge of an electron, which was a crucial piece of information for the development of modern atomic theory. It also helped to confirm the existence of subatomic particles and their role in the structure of matter.

## 5. Are there any limitations or criticisms of the Millikan oil drop experiment?

Some criticisms of the experiment include potential errors in measurement and the assumptions made about the properties of the oil droplets. Additionally, the experiment has been criticized for not being entirely independent of theoretical assumptions. However, despite these limitations, the experiment remains a significant milestone in the history of physics.

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