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The students should understand the torque τ of a force about an axis as given by τ = Fr sin θ


Here are experiments our science specialists have selected to support this IB* topic.

Rotational Dynamics

Experiment #13 from Advanced Physics with Vernier — Mechanics

In this experiment, you will

  • Collect angular acceleration data for objects subjected to a torque.
  • Determine an expression for the torque applied to a rotating system.
  • Determine the relationship between torque and angular acceleration.
  • Relate the slope of a linearized graph to system parameters.
  • Make and test predictions of the effect of changes in system parameters on the constant of proportionality.

More Weight Lifting: Bicep Curls

Experiment #10 from Vernier Video Analysis: Conservation Laws and Forces

  • Use video analysis techniques to obtain position, velocity, angle, angular velocity, and time data for a human subject performing a seated bicep curl.
  • Analyze the rotational motion of the weight as it is raised during a bicep curl.
  • Identify a portion of the lift where the weight’s angular velocity is relatively constant.
  • Calculate the lift force for the constant angular velocity portion of the lift.
  • [Extensions] Create and analyze your own videos of a person lifting in different ways.

Educational Standard
International Baccalaureate (IB) 2025
A Space, time and motion
A.4 Rigid body mechanics
Standard level and higher level

* The IB Diploma Program is an official program of the International Baccalaureate Organization (IBO) which authorizes schools to offer it. The material available here has been developed independently of the IBO and is not endorsed by it.