AAPT Abstract Archive

Abstract Information

  Paper Type: Poster
  Title: Measurement of Center of Mass, Moments of Inertia, and Principal Axes
  Meeting: 127th AAPT National Meeting: Madison, WI
  Location: Exhibit Hall B
  Date: Monday, Aug. 4
  Time: 10:01AM
  Author: Steven Sahyun, Univ. of Wisconsin - Whitewater
262-472-5113, sahyuns@uww.edu
  Co-Author(s): Philip J. Siemens
  Abstract: We will display an apparatus called CageX that has been used in the Rotational Motion Paradigm in Physics at Oregon State University. CageX consists of a metal wire mesh box that can be suspended by a fiberglass rod axle. In order to break the symmetry of the object, a ball of clay is added to one corner of the cage. Upper-level students use this non-ideal pendulum to investigate the center of mass, moment of inertia, and principle rotational axes. The location of the center of mass of the system is determined by the intersection of three wooden skewers. To find the moments of inertia, the cage is suspended by the axel and made to oscillate. Students calculate the principal moments of inertia and the principle axes for their system. The principle axes are verified by noting any precession or nutation of the system when spun about an axis of stability.
  Footnotes: None

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