A lever is a simple machine used to make work easier. It consists of a long, rigid bar with a support that allows the bar to pivot. The point where the bar pivots is the fulcrum. There are three classes of levers—first, second, and third. In this experiment, you will examine first-class levers. Crowbars and scissors are examples of first-class levers. A lever can help you move an object by increasing the force you exert. Mechanical advantage (MA) is a value that tells the number of times a machine increases an applied force. You will use a Force Sensor to measure resistance force and effort force (in newtons). You will then use this information to calculate the mechanical advantage of each lever.
In this experiment, you will
Calculate actual mechanical advantage (AMA).
Calculate ideal mechanical advantage (IMA).
Calculate percent difference.
Make conclusions about levers.
Sensors and Equipment
This experiment requires each of the following Vernier sensors and equipment (unless otherwise noted):
Step-by-step instructions for computer-based data collection
List of materials and equipment
Note: The experiment preview of the computer edition does not include essential teacher information, safety tips, or sample data. Instructions for Logger Pro and other software (such as LabQuest App or TI handheld software, where available) are on the CD that accompanies the book. We strongly recommend that you purchase the book before performing experiments.