Simple Experiments Offer Non-Intuitive Findings

Some simple physics experiments that were conducted on Earth do not produce intuitive results.

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You can determine the acceleration of a ball when it is thrown upwards at zero vertical velocity, or the time it takes for two balls hit the ground at the same horizontal plane at different horizontal velocities.

Discuss each result and explain why they are so confusing.

Answer to Question: PH 314 Introduction To Modern Physics


The study of the physics on our planet requires experiments.

They require critical observation under controlled conditions of every day phenomena.

Because some simple physics experiments are based upon strong fundamentals, they are not intuitive (W.T Griffith 8). This paper discusses the experimental results that determine the acceleration of a specific ball when its instantaneous horizontal velocity is zero. It also identifies the time taken for two balls with different initial horizontal speeds to land on a ground surface when they are thrown from the exact same plane.

These results may not be intuitive.

This paper will explore different perspectives to help answer this question.

Since they seek to prove the theory, results from physics experiments should be non-intuitive.

Throwing a ball upwards

It is a common daily occurrence that objects thrown higher than usual fall back to earth.

What miracle happens?

Why don’t the balls just keep moving upwards until they reach infinity?

The results of this experiment reveal how the ball velocity changes, and the maximum height the ball can reach, thus explaining the non-intuitive nature of the results (Conrad (2015).

It is important to be aware of the velocity vectors as well as the direction of acceleration in this experiment.

The velocity change can be measured in this experiment.

Let’s suppose that the ball is thrown up at a velocity of around 20 m/s.

This ball experiences a down acceleration of 9.8 m/s due to gravity. For calculation purposes, we will round it off to 10 m/s.

Gravity accelerates in an opposite direction to that of the initial ball velocity, so the ball’s velocity drops by 10 m/s per second.

This allows you to easily determine the instantaneous velocity. Our ball here will move at 10 m/s for one second.

By determining when the velocity of the ball becomes zero, you can determine how high the ball can go.

Projectile Motion and Falling Objects

Two identical balls are thrown from the plane surface at different speeds.

Here’s the issue of which ball will land on the ground first.

These results can be used to demonstrate how long it takes each ball to hit ground and how far it falls in different times.

It has been observed that a ball with a higher speed travels greater distances and takes less time to reach the ground than a ball with a slower initial velocity.

Gravitation acceleration increases the velocity of the balls.

This conclusion is based on the analysis of these results.

Since air resistance was not significant enough to cause any significant changes in the experiment, this effect has been ignored (W.T Griffith 8.

You can see the effect when objects with a small weight and a large surface area (e.g. a piece of paper) are used.

Here are the formulae to calculate distance and velocity.

V=V0 +

Distance = V0 + 1:2.


Physics of Everyday Phenomena – Conceptual Introduction to Physics T. Griffith 8Landau, D. P., & Binder, K. (2014).

A guide to Monte Carlo simulations of statistical physics.

Cambridge university Press. Conrad, J. (2015).

Statistical issues in astrophysical searching for particle darkness.

Astroparticle Physics. 62. 165-177.Agrawal, P., Nair, A. V., Abbeel, P., Malik, J., & Levine, S. (2016).

Learning how to poke: Experiential learning about intuitive physics.

Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems (pp. 5074-5082).

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