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Mechanical Engineering

Experiments and Statistics

The Short Laboratory Report

Group 2

Date of submission: 08/04/2014

1. Introduction

An object moving with a non-constant speed in a straight line is undergoing acceleration. If an

object moves with a constant speed but with non-constant direction, it is also undergoing

acceleration. Both types of accelerations is caused by a force. Change in the direction of an

object is called centrifugal acceleration, and the force producing the centrifugal acceleration is

called centrifugal force. This report will talk about the centrifugal force and its relation with

mass, speed and radius. The report is divided into four main sections. It will first consider the

theory behind the calculations and how the experiment was conducted. It will then show

different results that were taken in the experiment. It will then go on to show and explain the

results obtained. Finally some conclusion will be provided as to explain the errors and

difference between the theoretical and experimental result.

2. Objectives

The purpose of this experiment is to determine the relationship between the centrifugal force

and: 1. the square of the angular velocity, 2. the mass and 3. the radius of orbit for a body that

is undergoing centrifugal acceleration

3. Theory

For circular motion to occur there must be a constant force acting on a body, pushing it toward

the centre of the circular path. This force is the centripetal force. The magnitude of the

centripetal force is directly proportional the mass m of the body, its angular velocity squared

and the radius of its path, as shown in equation 1. Since for every action there is an equal

reaction, according to Newton's third law of motion, the centripetal force is balanced by a

reaction force that is the centrifugal force. The two forces have the same magnitude but

opposite direction.

𝑚𝑣 2

𝐹 = 𝑚𝜔2 𝑟 = (Equation 1)

𝑟

3.1. Apparatus

The device that was used in the experiment is a TM1005 for experiments in centrifugal force

and angular velocity. The mechanism has three balance arms. Two arms in the outside hold

any of the selected masses at any of five radial positions. A sensor measures the centrifugal

force due to the selected mass as it rotates about the given radii. The other arm holds equal

masses in an equal and opposite radius to balance the first mass. This prevents unnecessary

vibrations, which would affect measurement accuracy. The motor works in clockwise and

anticlockwise rotation and with variable velocity

Figure 1: TM1005 for experiments in centrifugal force and angular velocity.

4. Procedure

Before each experiment, the reading from the force has to be adjusted to zero. The first

experiment was to measure the centrifugal force with a fixed mass of 0.1 kg and radius of 0.1

m but with a varied speed. Weights of 0.1 kg were first put onto the arms in the radial position

of 0.1 m and then the velocity was adjusted to 5 rad/s and the reading of the centrifugal force

was taken. For every increasing of 5 rad/s in the velocity, readings of the centrifugal force were

taken. A total of 6 different velocity were recorder.

The second experiment was to measure the centrifugal force with a fixed speed of 30 rad/s and

radius of 0.1 m but with varied mass. Weights of 0.02 kg were first put onto the arms in the

radial position of 0.1 m and then the velocity was adjusted to 30 rad/s and the reading of the

centrifugal force was taken. For every increasing of 0.02 kg onto the arms readings of the

centrifugal force were taken until the last mass of 0.1 kg.

The third and final experiment was measure the centrifugal force with a fixed speed of 30 rad/s

and mass of 0.1 kg but with varied radius. Weights of 0.1 kg were first put onto the arms in the

radial position of 0.02 m and then the velocity was adjusted to 30 rad/s and the reading of the

centrifugal force was taken. For every increasing of 0.02 m of radius along the arm, readings

of the centrifugal force were taken. A total of 5 different position were recorder

5. Data obtained

Table 1: Results of fixed mass and radius, varied speed.

Theoretical Force F

ω(rad/s) 𝜔2 𝑟𝜔2 (N) Actual Force F (N)

0 0 0 0 0

5 25 2.5 0.25 0.25

10 100 10 1 1.01

15 225 22.5 2.25 2.25

20 400 40 4 4.01

25 625 62.5 6.25 6.27

30 900 90 9 9.03

Total Mass (g) Mass m (kg) Theoretical Force F (N) Actual Force F (N)

0 0 0 0

20 0.02 1.8 1.83

40 0.04 3.6 3.61

60 0.06 5.4 5.42

80 0.08 7.2 7.19

100 0.10 9 8.96

Radius (r) m 𝑟𝜔2 Theoretical Force F (N) Actual Force F (N)

0 0 0 0

0.02 18 1.8 1.78

0.04 36 3.6 3.55

0.06 54 5.4 5.34

0.08 72 7.2 7.18

0.1 90 9 8.94

In the first experiment, since the radius and the mass are constant the centrifugal force increases

as the angular velocity increases, as shown in figure 2, since the centrifugal force is directly

proportional to the angular velocity. In the second experiment, the centrifugal force also

increases but this time it increases as the mass increases, as shown in figure 3, since the angular

velocity and the radius are constant and the centrifugal force is directly proportional to the mass

as shown in equation 1. In the last experiment the centrifugal force increases with the radius

increment, as shown in figure 4, since the angular velocity and the mass are constant and the

centrifugal force is directly proportional to the radius as shown in equation 1.

Centrifugal force vs 𝜔²

Theoretical Force F (N) Actual Force F (N)

10

9

8

Centrifugal force (N)

7

6

5

4

3

2

1

0

0 100 200 300 400 500 600 700 800 900 1000

𝜔² (rad/s)

Figure 2: Relation between centrifugal force and the angular velocity squared.

Theoretical Force F (N) Actual Force F (N)

10

9

8

7

Force (N)

6

5

4

3

2

1

0

0 0.02 0.04 0.06 0.08 0.1 0.12

Mass (kg)

Centrifugal force vs radius

Theoretical Force F (N) Actual Force F (N)

10

9

8

Centrifugal force (N)

7

6

5

4

3

2

1

0

0 0.02 0.04 0.06 0.08 0.1 0.12

Raduis (m)

7. Discussion

From the result obtained it can be noticed that the relation between the centrifugal force, mass,

angular velocity and radius is linear. If the mass, speed or radius changes, the centrifugal force

will change since the centrifugal force is a consequence of inertia, the masses tend to continue

travel in a straight line and this cause the centrifugal force, so as bigger the speed, the mass or

the position of the mass the bigger will be the centrifugal force.

8. Conclusion

From the experiment carried out in centrifugal force in can be concluded that changing the

variables in our experiment affected the results greatly. The increase of the angular velocity,

mass or radius made the centripetal force go up. The theoretical and experimental results are

almost the same with a small difference between them caused by some error that took place

during the experiment conducted. It was difficult to set up the angular velocity exactly right,

there were some difference in decimals that could cause the changing in the readings. The

machine couldn’t have been calibrated that give non-accurate readings. In order to overcome

these error and to get the accurate value of the experiment, things need to be put into

consideration. Firstly, the person doing the experiment need to wait until the machine reaches

stable conditions, and carefully set up the speed exactly right and before the experiment is

conducted the machine used must be ensure to be functioning well.

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