# What factors determine the height, energy lost and frequency of bounces of a ball?

## Main Question or Discussion Point

Hey :D,

I'm doing an experiment to determine the energy lost of a ball after each bounce. I am doing this experiment to 3 types, tennis ball, squash ball and ping pong ball.

I have already determined what I need to do to work out the energy lost of a ball as a percentage after each bounce. Please correct me if im wrong
=100*(orginal Pe - new pe / orginal pe), Where Pe is just potential energy as using mass*9.81*height. So i would only have to find the mass and height of each bounce of the ball.

It is pretty obvious that each of theses balls loses energy each bonce at different rates E.G squash ball has lost all its energy after 3 bounces but the ping pong is still going after 10+ bounces. But what factors make this occur?

I assume that friction with the table is a major factor, and would need to find this.

Are there any more "major" factors and what experiments can i conduct to find out the fiction on the ball. This is only an A2 level experiment and details such as air resistance can be ignore.

Cheers, hope you can help :D

Greener

## Answers and Replies

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Andrew Mason
Homework Helper

What happens to the energy of a ball when it strikes a surface? It stops. How does it regain its energy? It must store it some how as internal potential energy and then release it back to the ball as kinetic energy. Compare the ways in which the three balls store that energy and release it back as kinetic energy.

AM

rcgldr
Homework Helper

The loss depend on how much of the deformation results in potential compression energy being converted into temperature (energy), which ends up being lost as radiated heat.

Although not included in your list of objects a superball, if you can find one, is very elastic. A billiard ball on a hard surface (marble, steel, ...) is also very elastic.