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Physics

Imam Mohammed
bin Saud Islmic
University
Science
Collage

Physics 011

Mechanics
Lab Manual

Prepared and
Designed by:
Hanan Akhdar (MSc)
2008

Imam University
Science Collage
Physics Department

Prepared and
Designed by:
Hanan Akhdar (MSc)

:For any questions


Physics_011@Hotmail.com

Lab

Table of Contents
Physics
011

Section 1: Lab rules

Page 2

Section 2: Lab report

Page 3

Section 3: Graphing

Page 4

Section 4: Equipment used in Lab

Page 6

Section 5: Experiments

Page 11

Experiment 1: Acceleration of linear uniform motion

Page 12

Experiment 2: Free fall

Page 15

Experiment 3: Newtons second law

Page 18

Experiment 4: The inclined plane

Page 23

Experiment 5: Friction of an inclined plane

Page 26

Experiment 6: Hooks law

Page 30

Experiment 7: Conservation of mechanical energy

Page 31

Experiment 8: Equilibrant force

Page 34

Experiment 9: Torque

Page 37

Experiment 10: Center of mass

Page 41

Section 6: Appendix

Page 47

Page 1

Section 1

Lab Rules
Physics
011

-You must attend the lab section.


-No one is admitted to the lab once the lab begins.
-Each student must have her own lab notebook.
-No food. No drinks.
-The lab must be clean at all time.
-Ask your teacher to check your equipments before
starting your experiment.
-At the end of each lab arrange all equipment tidily on
the bench.
-The laboratory manuals are NOT meant to be standalone documents; students are expected to use a text
book for supplementary reading.
-Lab reports must be submitted in a weeks time.
-Lab reports writing must be an individual effort
although the experiments will be performed in groups.
-The grading of the lab will be as follows: 5 grades for
the lab reports, 5 grades for the final theoretical exam
and 10 grades for the final experimental exam.
-A missed lab will receive a zero grade.
-A make up lab must be performed during the same week
of the missed lab.

Page 2

Section 2

Lab Report
Physics
011

The lab report should contain:


Title: This should begin each report. The student's name
followed by the date on which the experiment was performed
and the date the report is submitted and the name of
experiment.
Theory: A brief introduction including important formulas
and units.
Objective: The main objectives of the experiment.
Procedure: This briefly and clearly describes both the
experimental apparatus and how it was used.
Data Analyses: This is the heart of the report. Here you
describe how derived quantities were calculated from the raw
data. You should explain carefully and concisely the steps
involved in manipulating the data. You should include
appropriate analysis of any uncertainties. Include any tables
and figures that are necessary to explain your experiment.
Conclusion: This is where you summarize the results of the
lab and the percentage error.

Page 3

Section 3

Graphing
Physics
011

A graph is the clearest way to represent the relationship


between the quantities of interest.
A graph indicates a relation between two quantities, x and
y, when other variables or parameters have fixed values.
Before plotting points on a graph, it may be useful to
arrange the corresponding values of x and y in a table.
It is very important to use graph paper.
Choose a convenient scale for each axis so that the plotted
points will occupy a substantial part of the graph paper,
but do not choose a scale which is difficult to plot and
read.
Label each axis to identify the variable being plotted and
the units being used.
Identify plotted points with appropriate symbols.
Often there will be a theory concerning the relationship of
the two plotted variables. A linear relationship can be
demonstrated if the data points fall along a single straight
line. The straight line should be drawn as near the mean of
the all various points as is optimal. The line should be
drawn with about as many points above it as below it, and
with the 'aboves' and 'belows' distributed at random along
the line.
Page 4

Section 3

Graphing
Physics
011

A Slope is often used to describe the measurement of the


steepness, incline, gradient, or grade of a straight line.
The slope of a line in the plane containing the x and y axes is
generally represented by the letter m, and is defined as the
change in the y coordinate divided by the corresponding
change in the x coordinate, between two distinct points on the
line. This is described by the following equation:

Page 5

y
x

Section 4

Lab Equipment
Physics
011

Electronic Stop Clock


Used to measure short time intervals
Timing starts and stops manually or dynamically

Holding Electromagnet
Electromagnet with temporally-defined triggering of motions
Page 6

Section 4

Lab Equipment
Physics
011

Track
Contains two running rails on its top surface and it is
equipped with a recessed measuring scale on one side and
grooved rails on each side for attaching accessories

Pulley
Used to hang weights using threads
Page 7

Section 4

Lab Equipment
Physics
011

Trolley
The wheels are designed so as to make the trolley selfcentering and
a string holder is provided at both ends of the trolley

Mass Hanger
Used to slot weights
Page 8

Section 4

Lab Equipment
Physics
011

Slotted weights
Used with the weigh hanger

Light Barrier
Used as a sensor

Page 9

Section 4

Lab Equipment
Physics
011

Helical Spring
With scale on transparent tube for good visibility of the spring
balance construction

Page 10

Experimen
t
#1

Acceleration of
Linear Uniform
Motion

Physics
011

Theory:
Equations of motion are used to study the linear motion of a
uniformly accelerated body.
where:
1
d v 0 t at 2
2
v f v 0 at
v f2 v 02 2ad

d:

Displacement or change in position

vo:
vf:

Original velocity, the velocity at the start of


the acceleration
Final velocity, the velocity at the end of the
acceleration.

a:

Acceleration, this is a constant acceleration

t:

Time, this is the time period of the


acceleration.

From the equation of motion:


d = v0t + (1/2)at2
If the object starts at rest, we get:
d = (1/2) a t2
Equation 1.1

Page 11

Experimen
t
#1

Acceleration of
Linear Uniform
Motion

Physics
011

Objective:
To calculate the acceleration of an object moving in a
straight line with a constant acceleration using equations of
motion.
Equipment:
Track trolley holding magnet electronic stop clock
light barrier pulley mass hanger slotted weights
cables.

Page 12

Experimen
t
#1

Acceleration of
Linear Uniform
Motion

Physics
011

Procedure:
Set the equipment, use the cable to connect the trolley with
the pulley and the hanging mass.
Connect the holding magnet to the stop clock and adjust the
voltage so that the trolley is held.
Put the light barrier at a certain distance.
Release the trolley by stopping the magnet and record the
time the trolley took to pass the light barrier.
Repeat and record the time three times then calculate the
average time.
Change the distance and repeat the previous steps for each
distance.
Tabulate your data.
Distance
m

Time 1
s

Time 2
s

Time 3
s

Average
Time
s

Time square
s2

Plot a graph between the square time (x-axis) and the


distance (y-axis) or displacement traveled by the trolley.
Draw the best line and find its slope.
Calculate the acceleration from the slope using equation
1.1.13
Page

Experimen
t
#2

Free Fall
Physics
011

Theory:
Under free fall all objects have the same constant
acceleration, which in the metric system is 9.8 m/s 2 at sea
level, directed towards the center of the earth.

Equations that describe free fall without air resistance are:

1
y v 0 t gt 2
2
v f v 0 gt
v f2 v 02 2g y

where
y:
vo:
vf:
g:
t:

Page 14

Vertical displacement
Original velocity, the velocity at
the start of the acceleration
Final velocity, the velocity at the
end of the acceleration.
Acceleration due to gravity
Time, this is the time period of the
acceleration.

Experimen
t
#2

Free Fall
Physics
011

From the equation of motion:

1
y v 0 t gt 2
2

If the object starts at rest, we get:


y = (1/2) g t2

Equation 2.1

Objective:
To calculate the gravitational acceleration of a free falling
ball.
Equipment:
Steel ball contact plate holding magnet holding magnet
adapter with a release mechanism electronic stop clock
stand base rods scale connecting leads.

Page 15

Experimen
t
#2

Free Fall
Physics
011

Procedure:
Set the equipment and hold the steel ball using the holding
magnet at a certain height.
Release the ball and read the time the ball took traveling the
vertical distance, then reset the stop clock and reattach the
ball and read the time again , you should take three readings
of the time then find the average time the ball has traveled.
Reduce the height and repeat the previous steps.
Tabulate your data.
Height
m

Time 1
s

Time 2
s

Time 3
s

Average
Time
s

Time square
s2

Plot a graph between the square time (x-axis) and the height
(y-axis) or displacement of ball.
Draw the best line and find its slope.
Calculate the gravitational acceleration from the slope using
equation 2.1.
Find the percentage error.
Page 16

Experimen
t
#3

Newtons Second
Law
Physics
011

Theory:
Newton's laws of motion are three physical laws which
provide relationships between the forces acting on a body and
the motion of the body, first compiled by Sir Isaac Newton.
Newton's First Law: an object with no force acting on it
moves with a constant velocity.
Newton's Second Law: the acceleration of a body is directly
proportional to the net force acting on it and inversely
proportional to its mass.
F = ma
Equation 3.1
Newton's Third Law: for every action there is an equal and
opposite reaction.
In order to apply Newtons second law; a free body diagram
should be drawn for every object in the system.

Page 17

Experimen
t
#3

Newtons Second
Law
Physics
011

If two masses connected by a string over a pulley. One mass,


M, is a trolley resting on a horizontal track and held by a
magnet. The other mass, m, is hanging freely and is subject to
a downward force due to gravity (its weight); W = mg, and an
upward force due to the tension T in the string. The masses of
the string and pulley as well as the frictional resistance of the
pulley are assumed to be negligible.

Cart at Rest: When the cart is held stationary, there is no net


force on the hanging mass, so the tension in the string is given
by: T = W.
Cart accelerating: Since the length of the string does not
change, the cart and the hanger accelerate at the same rate, a.

Page 18

Experimen
t
#3

Newtons Second
Law
Physics
011

From the free body diagram of the hanging mass, we get:


T W = - ma
or
W - T = ma
or
T = mg - ma
where m is the hanging mass.

Page 19

Equation 3.2

Experimen
t
#3

Newtons Second
Law
Physics
011

From the free body diagram of the cart, we get:


T - fk = Ma
where M is the mass of the cart and fk is the frictional force
between the cart and the track and fk = k (fN), where k is the
kinetic friction coefficient and fN is the normal force done by
the track on the cart. In this case f N = W = Mg, Which gives
that:
T W = Ma
or
T - k (Mg) = Ma
or
T = Ma + k (Mg)
Equation 3.3
From equations 3.2 and 3.3 we get:
Ma + k (Mg) = mg ma
k = (mg ma Ma)/Mg
Equation 3.4

Page 20

Experimen
t
#3

Newtons Second
Law
Physics
011

Objective:
To find the kinetic friction coefficient of a trolley moving
on a track using Newtons second law.
Equipment:
Track trolley holding magnet electronic stop clock
light barrier pulley mass hanger slotted weights
cables.

Page 21

Experimen
t
#3

Newtons Second
Law
Physics
011

Procedure:
Set the equipment, use the cable to connect the trolley with
the pulley and the hanging mass, the hanging mass should be
kept constant through out the experiment.
Connect the holding magnet to the stop clock and adjust the
voltage so that the trolley is held.
Put the light barrier at a certain distance, the distance should
be kept constant through out the experiment.
Release the trolley by stopping the magnet and record the
time the trolley took to pass the light barrier.
Repeat and record the time three times then calculate the
average time, the acceleration and the kinetic friction
coefficient from equation 3.4.
Increase the weight of the trolley by adding blocks on top of
it.
Repeat the previous steps for each mass.
Tabulate your data
Mass (M)
kg

Time 1 Time 2 Time 3 Average Time Time square


s
s
s
s
s2

Give your conclusion.


Page 22

a = 2d/t2
m/s2

Experimen
t
#4

The Inclined Plane


Physics
011

Theory:
When an object slides down an incline, the component of
gravity pushing the block down the incline plane is:
Wx = mg sin()

Page 23

Equation 4.1

Experimen
t
#4

The Inclined Plane


Physics
011

Objective:
Balancing a rolling mass on an inclined plane.
Equipment:
Magnet board Inclined plane Pulley Masses Spring
balance Rolling mass Mass hanger String.

Page 24

Experimen
t
#4

The Inclined Plane


Physics
011

Procedure:
Weigh the rolling mass using the balance spring and
calculate its weight.
Set the incline on the magnet board at a certain angle and
record it.
Attach the rolling mass with a string and tie the string to the
balance spring and support the string with a pulley.
For accurate results, the string should be parallel to the
plane.
The Tension of the string is equal to the component of
gravity pushing the mass down the incline Wx.
The tension also could be measured using the balance
spring.
Find the percentage error between the two values of the
force.
Change the angle of the incline and repeat the previous
steps.
Tabulate your data.
Degree
30
40
50
60

Page 25

Fx (Measured)

Wx (calculated)

Percentage Error

Experimen
t
#5

Friction of an
Inclined Plane
Physics
011

Theory:
When an object is placed on an incline, Newtons second law
could be applied as follows:

Component of gravity pushing the block down the incline


plane: Wx = mg sin(). Component of gravity pushing the
block against the incline plane: Wy = mg cos()

Page 26

Experimen
t
#5

Friction of an
Inclined Plane
Physics
011

Using Newtons second law:


F = ma
On the y-axis:
fN Wy = 0
fN = Wy = m g cos()

Equation 5.1

On the x-axis:
fk Wx = - ma
k (fN) Wx = - ma
k (fN) = Wx ma
By substituting from equation 5.1:
k (m g cos) = mg sin ma
k = (mg sin ma) / (m g cos)

Equation 5.2

From the equation of motion:


d = v0t + (1/2)at2
If the object starts at rest, we get:
d = (1/2) a t2
Equation 5.3
Page 27

Experimen
t
#5

Friction of an
Inclined Plane
Physics
011

Objective:
To find the kinetic friction coefficient of an inclined plane.
Equipment:
Magnet board plane with protractor blocks stop clock.

Page 28

Experimen
t
#5

Friction of an
Inclined Plane
Physics
011

Procedure:
Attach the inclined plane to the magnet board with a certain
angle, record the angle.
Put a block on the plane and start the stop clock at the time
you release the block.
Stop the stop clock at the time the block reaches the end of
the plane and record the time it took the block to travel the
plane.
Repeat three times an find the average time of the block
sliding the plane.
Use equation 5.3 to calculate the acceleration of the block.
Use the result in equation 5.2 to find the kinetic friction
coefficient of the planes surface with the block.
Repeat the previous steps with two different angles.
Compare all results and give your conclusion.
Time 1
s

Page 29

Time 2
s

Time 3
s

Average
Time
s

Time square
s2

a = 2d/t2
m/s2

Experimen
t
#6

Hooks law:
Expansion of a
Helical Spring

Physics
011

Theory:
A material has a rest shape and its shape departs away from
the rest shape due to stress. The amount of departure from rest
shape is called deformation, the proportion of deformation to
original size is called strain.
Elastic material retain their rest shape after the stress is
removed. A spring is an example of elastic materials.
A spring-mass system obeys Hook's law, which states that the
extension produced is directly proportional to the load:
F = - kx
Equation 6.1
Where:
x: is the distance that the spring has been stretched or
compressed away from the equilibrium position [usually in
m].
F: is the restoring force exerted by the material [usually in N].
K: is the force constant (spring constant) and it is a measure
of the spring's stiffness [usually in N/m].
The negative sign in Equation 6.1 indicates that the direction
of F is always opposite the direction of the displacement. This
implies that the spring force is a restoring force. In other
words, the spring force always acts to restore, or return, the
body to the equilibrium position regardless of the direction of
the displacement,
Page 30

Experimen
t
#6

Hooks law:
Expansion of a
Helical Spring

Physics
011

Objective:
To determine a spring constant using Hooks law.
Equipment:
Helical spring magnetic board mass hanger slotted
weights

Page 31

Experimen
t
#6

Hooks law:
Expansion of a
Helical Spring

Physics
011

Procedure:
Attach the spring to the magnetic board.
The spring is placed in a scaled transparent tube which
allows reading the expansion or the force applied on the
spring directly.
Hang the mass hanger at the end of the spring and note its
mass.
Start adding slotted masses on the hanger one after another.
For each mass read the expansion and the force.
Tabulate your data.
Mass
kg

Weight
N

Expansion
m

Plot a graph between the force (x-axis) and the expansion


(y-axis) of the spring.
Draw the best line and find its slope.
Calculate the springs constant from the slope using
equation 6.1.
Page 32

Experimen
t
#7

Conservation of
Mechanical Energy
Physics
011

Theory:
Energy is the ability to do work and is measured by Jouls.
Mechanical energy has two different forms:
Potential energy is the energy an object stores due to its
position.
The gravitational potential energy is given by:
PE = m g h
Equation 7.1
Where m is the mass of the object, g is the gravitational
acceleration and h is the height of the object.
Kinetic energy is the energy of motion.
The kinetic energy is given by:
KE = (1/2) m v2
Equation 7.2
The total mechanical energy E, of any isolated system of
objects, is defined as the sum of the kinetic and potential
energies:
E = PE + KE
Equation 7.3
The principle of conservation of energy could be written as:
Ei = E f
Equation 7.4
Where Ei is the initial energy and Ef is the final energy

Page 33

Experimen
t
#7

Conservation of
Mechanical Energy
Physics
011

An object on an incline will move down with constant


acceleration. Energy conservation law:
Ei = E f
KEi + PEi = KEf + PEf
Equation 7.5

(1/2) m vi2 + m g hi = (1/2) m vf2 + m g hf


If the object starts from rest, we get:
m g hi = (1/2) m vf2 + m g hf
Equation 7.6
(1/2) m vf2 = m g hi m g hf
(1/2) vf2 = g hi g hf
v f 2g(h i h f )

Equation 7.7
From the equations of motion:
d = (1/2) (vi + vf) t
Equation 7.8
If the object starts at rest, we get:
vf = 2d / t
Equation 7.9
Which means that the final velocity could be found either by
the energy conservation law (Eqn 7.7) or by equation of
motion
(Eqn 7.9).
Page
34

Experimen
t
#7

Conservation of
Mechanical Energy
Physics
011

Objective:
To find the final velocity of an object sliding an incline with
constant acceleration using energy conservation law.
Equipment:
Track trolley holding magnet electronic stop clock
light barrier cables.

Page 35

Experimen
t
#7

Conservation of
Mechanical Energy
Physics
011

Procedure:
Set the track so that it will become an incline by rising one
side of it, use the holding magnet to hold the trolley still.
Connect the stop clock with a light barrier and put the light
barrier at a certain distance and record the distance that the
trolley should travel.
Measure the height at the beginning and at the end of the
motion of the trolley.
Release the trolley and find the time it needs to travel the
distance three times and find the average time of traveling.
Use the equation 7.7 and 7.9 to find the final velocity. The
two values should be equal.
Find the percentage error.
Calculate the initial and final PE and KE.
Repeat the previous steps by changing the height, the mass
and the distance and conclude their effect on energy.

Page 36

Experimen
t
#8

Equilibrant Force
Physics
011

Theory:
An object is said to be in equilibrium if the the resultant force
acting on the object is zero.
If a resultant force acts on an object then that object can be
brought into equilibrium by applying an additional force that
exactly balances this resultant. Such a force is called the
equilibrant and is equal in magnitude but opposite in direction
to the original resultant force acting on the object.

Page 37

Experimen
t
#8

Equilibrant Force
Physics
011

Objective:
To find the resultant force of two forces, then find the
equilibrant force.
Equipment:
Magnet board degree scale pulleys masses mass
hangers spring balance force ring string.

Page 38

Experimen
t
#8

Equilibrant Force
Physics
011

Procedure:
Use the magnet board to attach the degree scale.
Tie three strings to the force ring and attach two strings with
two mass holders with different slotted masses.
Set the hangers as pulling forces by using pulleys and make
the forces act in different angles with respect to the zero
degree line.
Use the holding pin to prevent the ring from accelerating.
Now attach the third string with the spring.
Adjust the spring balance until the force ring is in
equilibrium.

Draw the two forces F1 and F2 and find graphically their


resultant.
The resultant force you found should be equal to the force
applied by the spring (magnitude and direction), check your
results.
Page
39

Experimen
t
#9

Torque
Physics
011

Theory:
When a force F acts on a point which is displaced from the
axis of rotation a distance d, the torque by this force is
= Fd sin
Equation 9.1
where the is the angle between F and d.

When torque acts on an object, it rotates. Therefore, the net


torque must be zero to establish a mechanical equilibrium.

Page 40

Experimen
t
#9

Torque
Physics
011

Objective:
Balancing an object with different torques.
Equipment:
Magnet board balance beam pulleys masses mass
hangers spring balance string.

Page 41

Experimen
t
#9

Torque
Physics
011

Procedure:
Use the magnet board to attach the balance beam.
Hang two mass holders with different slotted masses.
Change the distance until the beam is balanced.
Calculate the torques and check your answer.

Page 42

Experimen
t
#9

Torque
Physics
011

Now remove one of the mass holders and use the degree
scale and the spring balance to apply another forces on the
beam with an angle of 30o.
Adjust the spring in order to balance the beam.

Record the first force applied by the hanging mass.


Then tabulate your data to find the force applied by the
spring and find the percentage error.
Change the angle and repeat the previous steps.
Degree
30
40
50
60
Page 43

F1

=F1d1sin

Error: (1-2)/2 x100

Experimen
t
# 10

Center of Mass
Physics
011

Theory:
The center of mass is an important concept in physics. The
center of mass is the point at which an object can be balanced.
Sometimes finding the center of mass of an object can be
challenging, especially if the object has an odd shape. This
experiment illustrates a simple way to find the center of mass
of some interesting shapes.

Page 44

Experimen
t
# 10

Center of Mass
Physics
011

Objective:
Finding the center of mass of a plane.
Equipment:
Magnet board Planar mass masses mass hangers
Degree plate string.

Page 45

Experimen
t
# 10

Center of Mass
Physics
011

Procedure:
Hang the planar mass from the holding pin of the degree
plate.
Since the force of the pin acting on the mass is equilibrant
to the sum of the gravitational forces acting on the mass, the
line of the force exerted by the pin must pass through the
center of mass of the planar mass.
Hang a piece of string with a hanging mass from the
holding pin.
Tape a piece of paper to the Planar Mass as shown.
Mark the paper to indicate the line of the string across the
Planar Mass.
Now hang the planar mass from a different point. Again,
mark the line of the string.
By finding the intersection of the two lines, locate the
center of mass of the planar mass.
Hang the Planar Mass from a third point. Does the line of
the string pass through the center of mass?

Page 46

Basic SI Units and


Prefix

Appendix
A

Physics
011

SI Units Basic
Unit Name

Unit Symbol

Quantity

Meter

Length

Kilogram

Mass

Second

Time

Joule

Energy

Watt

Power

SI Prefix
Multiple

Prefix

Symbol

1012

Tera

109

Giga

196

Mega

103

Kilo

102

Hector

10

Deca

Da

10-1

Deci

10-2

Centi

10-3

Milli

10-6

Micro

10-9

Nano

10-12

Pico

Appendix
B

Fractions
Physics
011

A fraction is expressed as a , where a is called the numerator


b
and b the denominator.
The addition or subtraction of fractions:
a c ad cb

b d
db

The product of fractions:

a c ac
x
b d db

a c ad cb

b d
db

Appendix
C

Vectors
Physics
011

Scalars: are quantities which are fully described by a


magnitude alone.
Vectors: are quantities which are fully described by both a
magnitudeand a direction.
A vector A in the x-y plane has two components, Ax and Ay.

The sum of two vectors, A and B , is a vector C , which is


obtained
by placing the initial point of Bon the final point

of
of to
A , and then
drawing a line from the initial pointA
the final point B
of .
Then


ABC
A x Bx C x
Ay B y C y

Appendix
C

Vectors
Physics
011

The subtraction of two vectors, A and B, is a vector C , Then



ABC
A x Bx C x
Ay B y C y

Appendix
D

Free Body Diagram


Physics
011

Free body diagrams are simplified representations in a


problem of an object, and the force vectors acting on it. This
body is free because the diagram will show it without its
surroundings.
some of the main forces:
Gravity: The first is that due to gravity, which is called the
gravitational force. The acceleration due to gravity of Earth is
approximately g = 9.8 m/s2. The force, by Newton's Second
Law is:
Fg = m g
Normal: The normal force is one which prevents objects
from falling into whatever it is they are sitting upon. It is
always perpendicular to the surface with which an object is in
contact.
Friction: Related to the normal force is the frictional force.
The two are related because they are both due to the fact that
the body is in contact with the surface. Friction is divided into
two types-static and kinetic.
Push and Pull: Another force which may act on an object
could be any physical push or pull.
Tension: Tension in an object results if the pulling force acts
on its ends, such as in a rope used to pull an object.

Imam Mohammed bin Saud Islamic


University
Phone: 2585190
Website: www.imamu.edu.sa