In this experiment, you will determine what advantage—if any—there is in using an inclined plane to move an object to a higher elevation.
Why are ramps used when lifting heavy objects? Does it make the task easier (requires less force)? Does it make the movement shorter (requires less distance)? Does it make the effort more efficient (requires less work)? Perhaps it does several of these; maybe it does none of them. In this experiment, the cart will act as the heavy object. Your task will be to move your cart a vertical distance of 20 cm above the tabletop. You will arrange a series of ramps (inclined planes) at different angles to accomplish this task. You will measure the force needed to move a cart up the incline. You will also measure the distance through which that force would be applied to finish the job. You will then calculate the work required to lift an object using an inclined plane. By the end of the experiment, you will be able to identify what an inclined plane can do for you in terms of force, distance, and work.