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2011 AAPT Summer Meeting
July 30-August 3, 2011
Omaha, Nebraska

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PST1D05:

A Systematic Error in a Boyle's Law Experiment
  Location: KFC Courts
  Date: Monday, Aug.1
  Time: 8:00 PM -8:45 PM
  Author: Richard McCall, St. Louis College of Pharmacy
314-446-8473, rmccall@stlcop.edu
  Co-Author(s): None
  Abstract: Systematic errors can cause measurements to deviate from the actual value of the quantity being measured. Using a meterstick that is not marked off correctly, using a balance to measure mass that has not been properly zeroed, or misinterpreting the range of a voltmeter are all examples. A simple Boyle's law experiment seeks to show that the pressure of a gas multiplied by its volume is a constant. A first attempt results in an experimental difference of about 5%. However, when the proper volume is taken into account, the difference reduces to about 1%. A discussion of how to measure the correct volume by indirect methods is presented.
  Footnotes: None
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