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# 300035 – Kinematics and Kinetics of Machines

## Using a torsional pendulum to determine the mass moment of

inertia of a disk

Experiment 2

Id: 19227290
Contents

## 1.0 Aim .............................................................................................................................................. 3

2.0 Background ................................................................................................................................. 3
3.0 Methodology............................................................................................................................... 4
3.1 Experimental Setup and Procedure ................................................................................................ 5
3.2 Equations used for calculations. ..................................................................................................... 5
4.0 Results ......................................................................................................................................... 6
5.0 Discussion: .................................................................................................................................. 6
6.0 Calculations ................................................................................................................................. 7
7.0 Conclusion ................................................................................................................................... 8
8.0 References .................................................................................................................................. 9
1.0 Aim
The primary objective of this paper is to measure the mass moment of inertia of a circular disk using
torsional pendulum.

2.0 Background
The rotational (or polar) mass moment of inertia about an axis (of rotation) is a measure of distribution
of the rotating mass about that axis. Its dimension in SI units is km.m2 and it is usually denoted by I.

Consider the shaft and disk in figure 1. If the disk is rotated about its axis by and angle ∅ from its
equilibrium position, the shaft applies a restoring torque to the disk. This torque is given by:
𝐽𝐺
𝑇=− ∅
𝐿
Where J is the polar moment of inertia of the shaft, given by:
1
𝐽 = 𝜋𝑅 4
2
And G is the shear modulus of the shaft. For the steel shaft used, G= 77.2 GPa. The negative sign in
equation 1 indicates that the restoring torque is in the opposite direction to the displacement.
3.0 Methodology

Rod

Disk

## Figure 1.1: Full experimental setup

Figure 1.3: Calipers used for measurements.

## The experimental procedure is as following:-

1. Measure the dimension of the shaft and disk using vernier scale.
2. Take measurements of the shaft length, thickness.
3. Take measurement of disk diameter and thickness.
4. Twist the disk approximately 10 degrees and release.
5. Determine the period (T) of oscillation of the pendulum by timing 20,30 and 40 oscillations using
a stopwatch.

## 3.2 Equations used for calculations.

1 4
𝐽= 𝜋𝑅 − − − − − − − −𝐸𝑞. 1
2
1
𝐾𝑛 = − − − − − − − − − 𝐸𝑞. 2
𝑇𝑛
1 𝐽𝐺
𝐾𝑛 = √ − − − − − −𝐸𝑞. 3
2𝜋 𝐿𝐼

1
𝐼 = 𝑚𝑅 2 − − − − − − − −𝐸𝑞. 4
2

4.0 Results

## No. of T1 (s) T2 (s) Taverage (s) Tn (S/cycle) Tn

oscillations Average

## 10 16.57 16.80 16.69 0.835

0.842
20 24.18 26.10 25.14 0838

## Object Measurement (m)

Length of rod 1.10
Diameter of rod 0.00635
Diameter of disk 0.345
Thickness of shaft 0.01905
Table 2: Recorded dimensions.

5.0 Discussion:

The term pendulum is really a misnomer as the device resembles a pendulum yet the reestablishing
power, in the mode concerning the proportion existing apart from moment of inertia, is provided by the
flexibility of the suspension and not by the gravitational field, as in real pendulum. The test object is
hung to some overhead structure by a long thin flexible round and hollow homogeneous pole of width D
and length L which gives the reestablishing torque by its torsional stiffness.As the two finishes of the
pole are cinched, the torsional solidness of the device and the moment of inertia of the object are:
1 4
𝐽= 𝜋𝑅 − − − − − − − −𝐸𝑞. 1
2
1 𝐽𝐺
𝐾𝑛 = √ − − − − − −𝐸𝑞. 2
2𝜋 𝐿𝐼
The device is next to no influenced by damping yet the movement of the test object is feebly guided.
Just the gravitational power keeps the bar in vertical position and pendular movements with recurrence
can happen. It must be adequately kept far away from that of the rotational movement of the test item
to keep away from troubles in timing. In any case, as the rotational and the pendular methods of the
device uncouple well no associations can be normal. The focal point of mass of the test object must be
very much offset as for the centerline of the torsional bar and the last should be all around adjusted to
the significant main pivot of inactivity to abstain from bending and coupling of the different rotational
modes (Genta and Delprete, 1994).

The values in this experiment are less than theoretical values mainly because we neglect human reacting
time in the calculation. It is assumed to be zero, which is not true in real life situations. Other
assumptions that allow us to make use of equation of motion equation, but at the same time reduce the
accuracy of experimental values obtained.

6.0 Calculations

1
𝐾𝑁 = = 1.188
0.842

## Calculating polar moment of inertia, J

1
𝐽 = 𝜋(0.003175)4
2
𝐽 = 1.596 ∗ 10−10

1 𝐽𝐺
𝐾𝑛 = √
2𝜋 𝐿𝐼

1 𝐽𝐺
1.188 = √
2𝜋 𝐿𝐼

1 𝐽𝐺
1.1882 = ( )2
2𝜋 𝐿𝐼

## 1.411 𝐿𝐼 = 0.0253 ∗ 1.596 ∗ 10−10 ∗ 77.2 ∗ 109

0.0253 ∗ 1.596 ∗ 10−10 ∗ 77.2 ∗ 109
∴𝐼=
1.411 ∗ 1.1
𝐼 = 0.2008 𝑚4

𝐼𝑂 = 0.184 𝑚4

## Calculating theoretical mass moment of inertia, I:

𝑀𝑎𝑠𝑠
𝐷𝑒𝑛𝑠𝑖𝑡𝑦 =
𝑉𝑜𝑙𝑢𝑚𝑒
𝑀𝑎𝑠𝑠 = 𝑚𝑜𝑙𝑢𝑚𝑒 ∗ 𝑑𝑒𝑛𝑠𝑖𝑡𝑦
∴ 𝑚𝑎𝑠𝑠 = 𝜋 ∗ 𝑟 2 ∗ ℎ ∗ 𝑑
= 𝜋 ∗ (0.1725)2 ∗ 0.01905 ∗ 7860
𝑚 = 13.99 𝑘𝑔

1
𝐼 = 𝑚𝑅 2 − − − − − − − −𝐸𝑞. 4
2

1
∴𝐼= ∗ 13.99 ∗ 0.17252
2
𝐼 = 0.208

## Percentage error in the experiment:

𝑇ℎ𝑒𝑜𝑟𝑒𝑡𝑖𝑐𝑎𝑙 − 𝑒𝑥𝑝𝑒𝑟𝑖𝑚𝑒𝑛𝑡𝑎𝑙
∗ 100
𝑇ℎ𝑒𝑜𝑟𝑒𝑡𝑖𝑐𝑎𝑙
0.208 − 0.2008
∗ 100
0.208
= 3.46%

7.0 Conclusion

The objective of this experiment to measure the mass moment of inertia of a circular disk using torsional
pendulum, which have been met. Both the theoretical and experimental values of I has been calculated
and the values for I is almost similar can be seen clearly, with very less percentage error.
8.0 References

## 1. Genta, G. and Delprete, C. (1994). Some considerations on the experimental determination of

moments of inertia. Meccanica, 29(2), pp.125-141.
2. Ringegni, P., Actis, M. and Patanella, A. (2001). An experimental technique for determining mass
inertial properties of irregular shape bodies and mechanical assemblies. Measurement, 29(1),
pp.63-75.