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Physics/Velocity vs. Energy

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Question
Hello! For my physics class, we have been assigned to answer the question of "What is the relationship between an object's velocity and its energy?". We must design our own lab, and we may use materials such as meter sticks, rubber bands, springs, force probs, LoggerPro, motion detectors, stopwatches, tracks, toy cars and photogates. I'm confused about how to begin this. I'm pretty sure that first we must graph the force vs. the displacement, then calculate the energy, and then from that point, graph the energy vs. the velocity. I just don't know how to get from that 1st step to the last step. I am also not positive on how to find the formula for energy. I know that the formula for the area of a triangle ((1/2)bh) ; however, my teacher said that there is even more to it. If you wouldn't mind explaining some of this, it would be great! Thank you!

Answer
It sounds like you don't need me, you need to google search some terms like "conservation of energy lab" and get some results like this: http://phys.columbia.edu/~preceptor/1494Manual_SP12.pdf
That has some examples for using a position sensor and such.  If you have force probes, that's great, too.  

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Dr. Stephen O. Nelson

Expertise

I can answer most basic physics questions, physics questions about science fiction and everyday observations of physics, etc. I'm also usually good for science fair advice (I'm the regional science fair director). I do not answer homework problems. I will occasionally point out where a homework solution went wrong, though. I'm usually good at explaining odd observations that seem counterintuitive, energy science, nuclear physics, nuclear astrophysics, and alternative theories of physics are my specialties.

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I was a physics professor at the University of Texas of the Permian Basin, research in nuclear technology and nuclear astrophysics. My travelling science show saw over 20,000 students of all ages. I taught physics, nuclear chemistry, radiation safety, vacuum technology, and answer tons of questions as I tour schools encouraging students to consider careers in science. I moved on to a non-academic job with more research just recently.

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Ph. D. from Duke University in physics, research in nuclear astrophysics reactions, gamma-ray astronomy technology, and advanced nuclear reactors.

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