Energy of a Cart on a Ramp - Data Sheet

Data Table

 Trial #1 Potential Energy Calculation Measurement: Mass of the cart-M (kg) Measurement: Original height (m) Measurement: Final height (m) Calculation: Difference in height- h1-h2 (m) Calculation: Difference in potential energy U = M*g*(h1-h2) acceleration due to gravity, g = 9.8 m/s2 Kinetic Energy Calculation Calculator Measurement: Final velocity-v (m/s) Calculation: Final kinetic energy KE = (1/2)*M*v2

 Trial #2 Potential Energy Calculation Measurement: Mass of the cart-M (kg) Measurement: Original height (m) Measurement: Final height (m) Calculation: Difference in height- h1-h2 (m) Calculation: Difference in potential energy U = M*g*(h1-h2) acceleration due to gravity, g = 9.8 m/s2 Kinetic Energy Calculation Calculator Measurement: Final velocity-v (m/s) Calculation: Final kinetic energy KE = (1/2)*M*v2

 Trial #3 Potential Energy Calculation Measurement: Mass of the cart-M (kg) Measurement: Original height (m) Measurement: Final height (m) Calculation: Difference in height- h1-h2 (m) Calculation: Difference in potential energy U = M*g*(h1-h2) acceleration due to gravity, g = 9.8 m/s2 Kinetic Energy Calculation Calculator Measurement: Final velocity-v (m/s) Calculation: Final kinetic energy KE = (1/2)*M*v2

1. Why aren't the potential and kinetic energy readings that we compare exactly the same?

2. Pretend you were sliding down a snow hill on a sled with no friction, just like the cart in the experiment. During your descent of the hill describe how your gravitational potential energy, kinetic energy, and total energy change.

3. What would happen if we used a heavier cart in the experiment? Would it have gone faster or slower, or the same speed? Why?