Lab: Finding the Spring Constant (k)

I.Question/Purpose

What is Hooke's Law, and what does it have to do with k?

Objectives: Determine the spring constant of a spring, Calculate the elastic potential energy, Calculate gravitational potential energy, Determine whether mechanical energy is conserved in an oscillating spring.

II.Materials List

Meterstick, Set of masses, and Support stand and clamp

III.Hypothesis

In order to estimate the spring constant (k), one must first understand that a higher value of the spring constant (k) represents a stronger spring, and a lower value represents a weaker spring. That is true because F and x in Hooke's Law (F=kx) have a direct relationship. So, I can state that k will be a numerical value and have the label of N/m. My guess for the spring constant (k) of the spring that we used is 10 N/m , because it seems to be a fairly strong spring, yet has some give.

IV.Procedure: See Attatched

V.Recording and Analyzing Data

Analysis and Interpretation

1.b) elongation = stretched spring - initial spring; initial spring = 0.00m;

Therefore, elongation = stretched spring

c) F=mg; F=9.8m

Trial

g

Mass (kg)

Force (N)

1

9.8

0.1

0.98

2

9.8

0.15

1.47

3

9.8

0.2

1.96

4

9.8

0.25

2.45

5

9.8

0.3

2.94

6

9.8

0.35

3.43

2.k = force/elongation

Trial

Stretched Spring (m)

Mass (kg)

Force (N)

k (N/m)

1

0.04

0.1

0.98

24.5

2

0.06

0.15

1.47

25.3

3

0.08

0.2

1.96

26.1

4

0.09

0.25

2.45

26.9

5

0.11

0.3

2.94

26.72

6

0.13

0.35

3.43

26.4

average k = 25.99 N/m

3.A stiffer spring would cause a higher value for the spring constant. It would increase the elastic and gravitational potential energies.

4.b) elongation = highest point - initial spring; initial spring = 0;

Therefore, elongation = highest...