In this experiment, we used a nearly frictionless surface to compare velocity characteristics to that of momentum, suing different weights, as well as bouncing carts and sticking carts together. This is important to understand, because momentum is a combination of weight and velocity, where as velocity is independent of weight.
The materials we used for this experiment include 2 carts, with weights of 139.7 grams and 290.4 grams. We also used springs on the ends to “bounce” or transfer energy from one to the other. We also used an A-frame with air holes that blew out air to create a near frictionless surface for the carts to travel. On top of the A-frame, we also had 2 photogates which recorded velocity of the 2 carts as they moved through them. The methods we utilized were as follows. We put one cart at the end of the A-frame, while the other cart was in between the 2 photogates. We then pushed the cart near the end of the frame through the first photogate, and recorded the velocity of the second cart (or both if they stuck together) as it/they traveled though the second gate. We did numerous tests of this, using repulsion (spring action) and attraction (Velcro) to better understand the difference between momentum and velocity.
The results were that the carts that had repulsion or springs on them, had nearly identical velocities at the end. This was a good sign, because it showed that the amount of energy lost within the system was at a minimal, and would likely not impact our end results. This also was a good show of how velocity was not impacted by weight, since the 2 carts were of