Science Investigation

My aim is to find out whether mass affects the distance travelled by a margarine tub with the same force applied.

What I Will Do

First of all I will set up the apparatus and have one person sitting on the stool to make sure it does not move. Ill then place the tub in front of the pulled back elastic band (15N) and let go of the tub, letting it move forward. I will then make a mark near the rulers with the chalk where the tub stopped and record my results in a table.

Preliminary Experiment Results

Weight (grams)

Distance Travelled (centimetres)

100

114

200

82

300

46

400

32

When I performed the preliminary experiment, I found out that 100g differences between the weights does not give me a valid set of results. The difference between the distances travelled is large and if I plot a graph, the points would be too sparse to give an accurate graph.

Factors that could affect the experiment

Possible Affecting Factors

Why It Affects

How It Is Overcome

Surface area of tub

More friction with larger S.A

Keep same tub

Friction on the ground

Will slow down tub

Clean floor beforehand

Different type of floor

Less or more friction

Stay on same floor

Mass flying out of tub

It will give inconclusive results

Aim down slightly when releasing + use some tape

Where mass is positioned inside the tub

Force by elastic band may be absorbed by weight.

A thin layer of selotape will keep it in place

Prediction

I think that as I add more mass, the distance that the margarine tub will travel will decrease. This will happen because the greater the mass in the tub, the greater the downward force exerted on the floor and therefore the more friction that is between the tub and the floor. Because there is more friction between them, the tub will travel less far on the same amount of force.

I think that the first movement of the tub (no mass) will go the furthest and the last one (500 grams) will move the shortest. The distance travelled will decrease steadily as we add the mass.

Apparatus List

* Stool (constant)

* Elastic Band (constant)

* Newton Meter (constant 15N)

* Chalk (constant)

* Margarine Tub (constant)

* 50g weights (variable)

* 3 Meter Sticks (constant)

Method

First of all I gathered the equipment I’d need to carry out the experiments and then I set them up (see apparatus list and diagram). I used a stretch of the sports link corridor because there’s plenty of space and the surface is relatively smooth (to reduce friction between the tub and floor).

I placed the stool in front of a stretch of the floor and attached the rubber band between the front two legs.

Placing two metre sticks in a straight line facing the stool, I got a person to sit on the stool to balance the force that would be exerted on it (so that the stool does not move).

With the Newton metre’s hook on the elastic band behind the tub, I pulled it back so that it read 15 Newton’s. I let go of the elastic band and the tub moved forward depending on how much mass was in it.

I marked on the ground by the ruler how far the tub moved and then recorded all the marks in a table.

After completing this, I performed the experiment again because I wanted to see if my results were conclusive enough. If there was any results that looked wrong or out of place then I would know that they were bad. There was a result that looked wrong (see results table on next page) so I repeated the experiment for the third time and the results were conclusive.

Analysis

Results

Results Of 1st Experiment Results Of 2nd Experiment Results Of 3rd Experiment

Mass

Distance (cm)

0

295

50

167

100

116

150

96

200

85

250

62

300

44

350

34

400

29

450

20

500

18

(See 1st graph) (See 2nd graph) (See 2nd graph)

x

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I'm Mack!

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