PHYS310 Lab 5 Projectile Motion

Tutorial includes complete laboratory (including methods and materials, experimental data, full explanations, and diagrams) with the following questions answered:

Questions 1. If you were to throw a ball horizontally and at the same time drop an exact copy of the ball you threw, which ball would hit the ground first and why is this so?

2. What forces are acting on the marble before and after it leaves the ramp?

3. Describe the acceleration of a marble for the period after it leaves the ramp and before it hits the ground.

4. Did your prediction in Procedure 2 come close to the actual spot? Find the percent error of your predicted distance (expected) compared to the actual average distance (observed).

5. Explain some possible sources of error that could have produced the deviation above.

Experiment 2: Squeeze Rocket projectiles


  1. Draw a FBD (free body diagram) (you can review free body diagrams in the Week 3 lecture) for a rocket flying at an arbitrary angle. Indicate the force vector due to gravity and force vector due to air resistance. Why does the direction of the net force change over the course of the rocket’s trajectory?

  2. Explain how the launch angle affects both the trajectory and final range of the rocket. What angle (or range of angles) appears to produce the greatest range?
  3. Knowing the kinematics equations, what angle should yield the greatest projectile range, disregarding air resistance and other factors? Show all calculations.
  4. How does air resistance affect the accuracy and precision of your rocket data in this lab?
  5. Calculate the percent error between your measured values and the predicted values. Given the nature of the squeeze rocket and your results, comment on any other sources of error that significantly affect your distance measurements.
  6. How would a kicker on a football team use his knowledge of physics to better his game? List some other sports or instances where this information would be useful.


PHYS310 Lab 5 Projectile Motion
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