SCI214 – Integrated Science
Lab 2: Circular Motion
Circular motion is one of the fundamental building blocks for understanding the physical world because it is so common. In reading the Tillery text, you’ve explored the notion that the revolutionary movement of an object around a central body is the result of a combination of forces. Objects tend to travel in a straight line path but they can also be deflected from that path by a central body. The force that pulls the object out of that straight-line motion is called centripetal force. In the mean time the orbiting object is exerting an equal and opposite force such that if the connection between the two bodies were blocked, the smaller object would continue to travel in a straight line direction away from the central body; although not necessarily the same direction as before. We call is centrifugal reaction. Tillery describes this orbiting system in terms of inertia, mass, and acceleration. This interactive lets you examine these basic ideas and adds two new ideas to the mix; angular displacement and angular velocity (See lab overview for directions)
In this experiment you will be examining an object orbiting around a central body where the radius of the orbit is 1.0 meter. The goals of this experiment are to explore the nature of the relationships between mass, acceleration, force, and time.
Prelab Questions (2 points each)
Answer the following four questions with as much detail. Enter your response in the box below the question. Please complete these questions before conducting the experiment.
Question 1: What does your reading of Tillery tell you about the nature of the relationship between velocity, acceleration, mass and force?
Question 2: How do you plan on designing this experiment using the features on the Applet to explore these relationships?
Data Analysis (12 points)
How would you interpret the above results? Be specific. Do your results conform to what you read about circular motion in the Tillery text? Explain.
Post Lab Questions (2 points each)
Answer the following five questions with as much detail as possible. Enter your response in the box below the question.
Question 3: While this simulation allows you to explore the nature of the relationships between velocity, force, and acceleration, what important issues are being ignored?