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# A Physics Experiment Watch

1. Say you had an experiment and it included you timing something. There would be a reaction time for you stop or start the timer.

How could you improve the experiment / measuring the time so that the reaction time would be less significant
2. (Original post by CapsLocke)
Say you had an experiment and it included you timing something. There would be a reaction time for you stop or start the timer.

How could you improve the experiment / measuring the time so that the reaction time would be less significant
By making the time interval you are measuring as long as possible.
Then the reaction time, as a percentage of the total time you are measuring, becomes less.
3. depends what you're timing.

if possible use light gates or some other sort of sensors

or as stonebridge says, increase the amount of time each thing you're measuring takes.

we really need details of the experiment to come up with real usable suggestions
4. (Original post by didgeridoo12uk)
depends what you're timing.

if possible use light gates or some other sort of sensors

or as stonebridge says, increase the amount of time each thing you're measuring takes.

we really need details of the experiment to come up with real usable suggestions
The experiment involves a hacksaw firmly attached to the end of a work bench, with a mass attached to the other end.

We have to make oscillate and have to calculate the period, frequency of the oscillation.

What we did was time how long it took for 10 oscillations, and then divide the the time by 10 to get the period. We timed it using a stopwatch, but that can be inaccurate. So what could I do to improve how I measure the time for the number of oscillations.

I was thinking about light gates, but I wouldn't know how you would set them up in this case.
5. Increase the number of oscillations you use to say 20, so the fractional error will be smaller and therefore less important as Stonebridge and didgeridoon suggested above. Realistically you can't increase it too far though as the air will cause a damping force on the oscillator. Human reaction time is fairly constant for people when you are expecting something to occur, at around 0.1seconds. ou could actually test yourself for your own reaction time, by timing up to 10 seconds and stopping the stopwatch, and measuring how far you are typically away from 10 seconds exactly.

If you used an analogue stopclock that you could only read to half a second then you could also use a digital stopclock with a higher number of decimal places available to read.
6. (Original post by CapsLocke)
The experiment involves a hacksaw firmly attached to the end of a work bench, with a mass attached to the other end.

We have to make oscillate and have to calculate the period, frequency of the oscillation.

What we did was time how long it took for 10 oscillations, and then divide the the time by 10 to get the period. We timed it using a stopwatch, but that can be inaccurate. So what could I do to improve how I measure the time for the number of oscillations.

I was thinking about light gates, but I wouldn't know how you would set them up in this case.
just do 20 or 30 periods, the more you do the more accurate it will be as the error per period gets smaller and smaller

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Updated: December 14, 2010
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