257-MP0 Manual Addendum Rev 1

257-MP0 Manual Addendum Rev 1 - MP0 Propagation of Errors...

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1 MP0 Propagation of Errors PHY 257 I. Objective. To study the propagation of errors II. Equipment: Incandescent light source, component carriers, optical bench, lens (f = 127 mm), screen. III. Introduction. In many experiments we wish to determine the quantity z which is connected with a parameter x through the equation: ) ( x f z . First we measure x with an uncertainty σ x and using the expression ) ( x f z we then determine z . For example, the area A of a square of side a is given by the equation: 2 a A . The uncertainty σ x in the parameter x will propagate through the function f and result in an uncertainty σ z in the parameter z . The general expression for σ z is given by the equation: x z x f In a different type of experiments the parameter z we wish to determine depends on two other parameters x and y through the equation: ) , ( y x f z For example in order to determine the resistance R of a resistor we measure the voltage V applied across the resistor and the current I that passes through it. The resistance R is given by the equation: I V R . In the course of such an experiment we measure the parameters x and y with uncertainties σ x and σ y , respectively. These uncertainties propagate through the function f and result in an uncertainty σ z of the parameter z .
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This note was uploaded on 11/09/2010 for the course PHY 35345 taught by Professor Aa during the Spring '10 term at SUNY Buffalo.

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257-MP0 Manual Addendum Rev 1 - MP0 Propagation of Errors...

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