Vernier Software and Technology
Vernier Software & Technology

Frictional Forces

Introduction

Friction is a force that resists motion. It involves objects in contact with each other, and it can be either useful or harmful. Friction helps when you want to slow or stop a bicycle, but it is harmful when it causes wear on the parts of a machine. In this activity, you will study the effects of surface smoothness and the nature of materials in contact on sliding friction. You will use a Force Sensor to measure frictional force, in Newtons (N), as you pull a block across different surfaces.

Objectives

In this experiment, you will

  • Measure sliding friction.
  • Measure friction between a wooden block and smooth-surface wood.
  • Measure friction between a wooden block and rough-surface wood.
  • Make predictions about other surfaces.
  • Test your predictions.

Sensors and Equipment

This experiment features the following Vernier sensors and equipment.

Option 1

Option 2

Option 3

Additional Requirements

You may also need an interface and software for data collection. What do I need for data collection?

Standards Correlations

See all standards correlations for Middle School Science with Vernier »

Middle School Science with Vernier

See other experiments from the lab book.

1A Hot Hand
2Heating of Land and Water
3The Greenhouse Effect
4Relative Humidity
5Soil Study
6Absorption of Radiant Energy
7Reflectivity of Light
8Schoolyard Study
9A Good Sock
10What Causes the Seasons?
11Solar Homes
12Ocean Floor Mapping
13Boiling Temperature of Water
14Freezing and Melting of Water
15How Low Can You Go?
15BZiplock Ice Cream
16A Good Cold Pack
17Lemon "Juice"
18Get a Grip!
19Fun with Pressure
20Water Hardness Study
21Diffusion: How Fast?
22A Water Field Study
23Cooling Rates: Shaq vs. Susie
24Yeast Beasts in Action
25Heart Rate and Body Position
26Heart Rate and Exercise
27Mapping a Magnetic Field
28Electromagnets
29Frictional Forces
30First-Class Levers
31Pulleys
32Buoyancy
33Graphing Your Motion
34Speeding Up
35The Indy 100
35BPencil Car
36Crash Dummies
37Falling Objects
38A Speedy Slide

Experiment 29 from Middle School Science with Vernier Lab Book

<em>Middle School Science with Vernier</em> book cover

Included in the Lab Book

Vernier lab books include word-processing files of the student instructions, essential teacher information, suggested answers, sample data and graphs, and more.

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