PE_and_KE_of_a_Pendulum_Experiment_Worksheet

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					                                                    Name______________________________


Potential and Kinetic Energy of a Pendulum Experiment Worksheet
Data Table
Fill in the table completely. In the space below the table, show calculations for one of the
trials.

   Height above               5 cm                  15 cm                  25 cm
   photogate, h

Height of photogate
     sensor, hf

Height above table,
        hi

         m


        PEi


        KEf
    (calculated)
         vf
    (calculated)
          vf
   (experimental)
   Percent error




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                                                     Name______________________________


Analysis
  1. Assuming that air resistance is negligible, would you expect the mechanical energy of the
     pendulum bob to be conserved as it swings from position A to position B to position C?
     Explain your answer.




  2. Express your expectation by filling in the bar chart below for the kinetic energy (KE),
     potential energy (PE), and total mechanical energy (TME) at the five positions.




  3. In complete sentences, describe what happens to the amount of kinetic energy and the
     amount of potential energy as the pendulum bob moves from A to B to C to D to E. Be
     clear and specific.




  4. If air resistance had a significant influence on the motion of the pendulum bob, then how
     would your answers to questions #2, #3, and #4 be different? Explain using complete
     sentences.




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                                                      Name______________________________


Discussion
Answer each of the following questions in its own paragraph.

   5. Based on your data, is the mechanical energy of the pendulum bob conserved? Support your
      answer by using actual data from the table.




   6. Of the external forces acting upon the bob, which (if any) do work upon the bob? Use a
      free-body diagram to help explain your answer. How does this work (or lack thereof) affect
      the conservation of mechanical energy?




   7. Describe at least two sources of error in this experiment.




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