Lab 6 – Energy of a Rolling Object
Section 442 – Arada Malekian
Thursday, March 17
th
, 2011
Alec Rubenstein
Partner: Andres Novoa
Pledge:
Abstract
:
The purpose of this experiment is to explore the Law of Conservation of Energy and to obtain the
geometric factor k, which is a constant in the equation for the moment of inertia of an object.
A
rolling object possesses both translational kinetic energy and rotational kinetic energy, which is
associated with the rotation of the object about its center of mass.
The translational kinetic
energy is and its rotational kinetic energy is where ω is the angular velocity in radians/sec
(explored in the last lab) and
I
is the object’s moment of inertia which is where
m
is the mass of
the object,
r
is its radius and
k
is the geometric constant being calculated in this experiment.
Because the conservation of energy states that the total amount of energy in an isolated system
remains constant, an experiment was devised using a ramp and a tray to measure the object’s
total energy at the top of a ramp and compare it to the total energy at the bottom of the ramp.
In
this procedure, a black ring was rolled down a ramp starting from the top of the ramp set on a
table and a carbon sheet was taped to the tray which was placed strategically on the floor in a
position to catch the object.
Using six different heights, three distance measurements for
horizontal projectile path were measured from the plumb line after leaving the ramp.
The
height, h , of the objects’ position on the ramp was measured from the bottom of the object.
The vertical height, H, is the vertical height of the ramp above the floor.
In part 2 of the experiment, five objects including a silver ring, silver cylinder, black ring, black
cylinder, and black ball were rolled down the ramp from the same initial height, h, to observe the
differences in the horizontal distance each lands from the end of the ramp for three trials.
The
average horizontal distance for each object was measured and the corresponding
k
factor was
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 Fall '08
 Pengyi
 Conservation Of Energy, Energy, Kinetic Energy, Law of Conservation of Energy, black ring, Silver Cylinder, silver ring

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