Physics - Lab Report Example

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In so doing, the understanding of oscillation characteristics in terms of period, frequency, amplitude and phase were to be evoked. The…

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Download file to see previous pages The experiment made use of a glider placed in an air track and suspended on two springs.
The setup is at rest and remains at rest because the springs subject an equal force on the glider; they cancel each other; it is at a stable equilibrium position. The force applied on the setup in particular direction results a net force that acts on the glider and tries to return to the equilibrium state. The combined forces pull in a manner that the resultant force takes It to the original position; determined as restoring force. When the glider is brought to the original position, it is still under the influence of velocity and therefore goes beyond the default position by overshoot moving to the opposite direction from the earlier force. The overshoot results in the whole drag to equilibrium starting all over again. The back and forth motion is referred to as an oscillation. Mathematically known as sine and cosine function; simple harmonic motion.
To analyze the problem let x be an instantaneous position of the glider while x0 is the equilibrium position. When the glider moves from the equilibrium position, the restoring force is F. without applying too much force resultant forces are linear hence force equation is;
It implies that when the glider moves away from the equilibrium, restoring force becomes bigger. F is proportional to x. k is the spring constant. The sign (-) represents the restoration character of the force in the setup. A positive different in (x-x0) indicates that the force is negative x direction. A negative (x-x0) implies a positive force direction.
Given a displacement initially A = x-x0, F = -kA, and accelerates towards the negative x-axis towards equilibrium; x = x0 where the restoring force is zero. It passes beyond x0 to the opposite direction and arrives with x-x0 = -A at zero velocity and it is pulled back. This forth and back motion goes on and results to oscillations. Without friction, kinetic energy and potential energy remain the ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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