Visibly demonstrate the parabolic path of a projectile with this simple model. Use the model to illustrate many concepts in dynamics. Small weights hang at different distances below a meter stick to show how the location of an object changes every 0.05 seconds as it falls with constant acceleration, due to gravity. Students will clearly see that for each time interval, the object falls a greater distance as it accelerates. Hold the model at different angles to show why a projectile fired at a 45º angle will travel further than an object shot at any other angle. Position the model at the end of a tabletop, roll a ball off the tabletop, and adjust the locations of the hanging weights “to dial” in the path of the falling ball. Once the path of the ball is correctly displayed, the speed of the ball can be quickly calculated. Compare the results to those predicted based on the law of conservation of energy. The model is easy to assemble using string, small weights, and spring-loaded clamps.
Enough materials to create one model and detailed instructions are provided. One meter stick is required, but not included.