Laboratory Experiment on Uniformly Accelerated Motion
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Laboratory Experiment on Uniformly Accelerated Motion

Consider a ball sliding down a very smooth, frictionless inclined plane. Due to a constant force action in the ball, it's velocity increases as it moves along the plane. The velocity of an object is continuously changing either in its magnitude or in its direction or in both. We defined acceleration as the time rate of change or velocity or Acceleration is equal to Change in Velocity divided by the Elapsed Time.

Motion where velocity changes is called accelerated motion. A freely falling body is a common example of uniformly accelerated motion, a motion where the velocity changes at constant rate. It is hard however, to observe the acceleration due to gravity because of the difficulty in measuring small time intervals. A body sliding down an inclined plane also moves with a constant acceleration on account of gravity. But the acceleration down the plane is very much less than acceleration of a freely falling body, especially if the angle made by the plane with the horizontal is small.

OBJECTIVE: To study the motion of a body moving along an inclined plane under the action of its weight or by the pull of gravity. MATERIALS: Ball, toy cart, books, wooden board, stone, piece of paper, watch with second hand.


(1) Set up a ramp by putting a pile of books on one end of the wooden planks.

(2) Practice moving the toy cart down the inclined plane. Observe its motion and path.

(3) Decrease or increase the steepness of the ramp. Observe the effect of the speed of the cart.

(4) Measure and record the time the cart crosses each 25-cm marker. You will have to make several practice runs to be able to quickly observe and record.

(5) Make at least two trials. Calculate the speed of the cart as it passes each 25-cm mark.

Part B

(1) Allowed a piece of paper and a stone to fall from a certain height. Record your observation.

(2) Use the same stone, but this time crumple the piece of paper and allow them to fall simultaneously from the same height. Record your observations.


(1) What do you understand by uniformly accelerated motion?

(2) If the angle made by the plane with the horizontal is increase, would the acceleration be greater or less? Why?

(3) What must have caused the cart to increase in speed?

(4) Is it possible for the toy cart to have a zero acceleration? Explain.

(5) Why is it very dangerous for vehicles to accelerate downhill?

(6) What do you understand by an accelerated 7 meters per second square? OR -2 meters per second square?

(7) A car starting from rest is accelerated 7 meters per second square to the left.

Find a) The velocity at the end of 5 sec. b) Displacement covered during this period.

(8) A car accelerated uniformly from a standstill (at rest) to 60 miles per hour in 4 sec. a) What is the acceleration? b) How far does it travel during this time interval?

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