Saturday, April 14, 2012

Investigating the effect of the length of wire on the current in a circuit.

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Physics Coursework


Plan


I am going to set up the apparatus as shown in the diagram. I will measure the current with varying lengths using an ammeter. To keep it a fait test I will maintain the wire the same thickness and make sure the voltage is constant using a voltmeter. To make the experiment accurate, I will perform it times, recording all sets of results. The length of wire I use will be form 5cm to 45cm. Before I perform the actual experiment I will take out a preliminary test to fore see any problems that may happen during the experiment.


Theory


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The current in a circuit pushes around electric charge. The electric charge in a circuit is carried around by coulombs. Wire is made up of particles. The longer the wire the particles there are for the coulombs to bounce off. The more the coulombs bounce off the particles the more they vibrate, the more they vibrate, the more heat they create. The hotter the coulombs get the more resistance there will be.


Hypothesis


The longer the wire the lower the current will be. This is because the more wire the charge has to pass through, the more energy it uses up as there are more particles so there is a bigger chance of the coulombs colliding with them. When the coulombs collide with the particles they vibrate and they get hotter.


I think that the longer the wire the higher the resistance will be.


Apparatus


Power pack


cables


Voltmeter


Ammeter


Crocodile clips


Metre rule


1 piece of wire.


Method


· Set up apparatus as shown in the diagram.


· Measure the length of the wire held by the crocodile clips to 5cm.


· Record the current in amps in a table.


· Repeat the above with different lengths of wire, keeping the voltage input the same the same throughout the experiment.


Results Table





The voltage was kept constant at 7.0 volts.


Current (amps)


Length of wire (cm) 1.00 .00 .00 Average


5.00 5.18 5.6 5.46 5.0


10.00 .5 .50 .77 .60


15.00 .7 .18 .5 .5


0.00 . .60 .58 .50


5.00 .0 .08 .18 .10


0.00 1.78 1.85 1.8 1.87


5.00 1.61 1.65 1.7 1.66


40.00 1.44 1.4 1.65 1.5


45.00 1.1 1.8 1.17 1.


Conclusion


My results bring me to the conclusion that the longer the wire is the higher the resistance is. This because the current in a circuit pushes around electric charge. The electric charge in a circuit is carried around by coulombs. Wire is made up of particles. The longer the wire the particles there are for the coulombs to bounce off. The more the coulombs bounce off the particles the more they vibrate, the more they vibrate, the more heat they create. The hotter the coulombs get the more resistance there will be. My results agree with my hypothesis.





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