Objective: During this lab Newton’s Law of static and kinetic friction was studied. The static and kinetic frictional coefficients were found for a block while sliding down a track through experimental trials.

Theory: In most experiments with tracks there is usually a cart involved to discount the frictional force. In this experiment a block is used because the surface area of the block has a larger frictional force with the surface of the track that can be measured. Fictional force is the force that resists the sliding of the block down the plane of the track. Therefore, this force is in the opposite direction of motion and parallel to it. When a force F is applied there is a static frictional force that comes into play. The static frictional force is seen to be fs and the maximum amount of static friction is found by the equation below: Eq. (1)

If the force is seen to be less than fs,max in any circumstance then the object that has the force applied to it will not move due to its equilibrium. Static friction is represented by the following equation.

Eq. (2)

If the force is greater than μsN then the object that has that force on it will begin to move in the direction of the force. On the other hand kinetic friction is described by the equation below.

Eq. (3)

In this equation μk is the coefficient of kinetic friction and fk is the kinetic friction.

(Continued from front flap)
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