Cool Labs

Acceleration Force and Mass
Acceleration Force and Mass

Students love fast moving experiments, but higher speeds often require higher technology. That can challenge the budget and students’ ability to use the technology. These simple, but highly accurate photogates remove both barriers. No costly computers are needed, and set...

Lab #5.5 Mechanics: Chapter 5  The Big BB Race
Lab #5.5 Mechanics: Chapter 5 The Big BB Race

Purpose In this activity, you will compare the path of a projectile launched horizontally with that of an object in free fall.DiscussionSuppose a ball bearing (BB) were launched horizontally at the same time another BB were dropped from the same...

Acceleration and Gravity
Acceleration and Gravity

When a car is on a ramp, a portion of its weight works to roll it down the ramp. Another portion works to hold it down to the ramp. These two portions, or component forces, are perpendicular to one another...

Gravity and Motion
Gravity and Motion

When a car is on a ramp, a portion of its weight works to roll it down the ramp. Another portion works to hold it down to the ramp. These two portions, or component forces, are perpendicular to one another...

Observing Acceleration with an Accelerometer
Observing Acceleration with an Accelerometer

Use a liquid accelerometer to observe different types of motion and classify the acceleration. Students will observe straight-line motion (constant velocity and constant acceleration), and then take their knowledge of the water's behavior to more complex circular and pendulum motion....

Acceleration Due to Gravity
Acceleration Due to Gravity

The first experiment will use very basic equipment to measure an important quantity, the acceleration of an object in freefall. This is also known as the acceleration due to gravity, or g. The acceleration due to gravity is nearly the...

Graphing Pendulum Motion
Graphing Pendulum Motion

Students predict and then measure, using a motion sensor, the changing position, velocity and acceleration of a simple pendulum. Graphing the motion leads to a discussion of the total force on the pendulum at different points in its motion. Download...

Ticker Tape Motion
Ticker Tape Motion

The ticker tape timer works by making dots on a paper tape at equal time intervals (approximately every 0.1s in this experiment). It is an excellent way for beginning physics students to experience the measurement of motion. Students will record...

Car and Ramp: Speed and Acceleration
Car and Ramp: Speed and Acceleration

This experiment will use photogates to find the speed and acceleration of a car rolling down a ramp. Photogates use a single beam of ultraviolet light which goes from one arm of the gate into a receiver in the other...

Acceleration Galileo's Inclined Plane
Acceleration Galileo's Inclined Plane

In Galileo's time, stopwatches had not been invented. He needed a way to measure the short time it took for a ball to roll down an incline. The set-up you will use is nearly identical to what Galileo would have...

Spark Timer Motion
Spark Timer Motion

Students will use a spark timer to record the motion of two toy cars. The spark timer produces a physical record of the motion by making a mark on tape at set intervals. Students measure the distance between the marks...