This is the team Etc.. page for the Ball Drop lab.
Our group discussed several ideas on how to slow the tennis ball down during its fall. We wanted to be creative and effective, so we decided to abandon some of the more creative plans because we feared they would either be hard to build effectively with the given materials or would violate the rules.
Hot air Balloon
- Use dowels to keep bottom open
- Cut bag short
- Use bag material to design original shape
Modifying the ball
- Spread ball pieces uniformly for balance
- Flatten ball for increased surface area
We decided to use bag material to design an original shape. In stead of using the shape of the bag we cut it to make a flat sheet of plastic from which we could cut a parachute from scratch.
ConstructionThough we had ideas about how the parachute should look, we felt why reinvent the wheel, so we used a design we found online. The design we eventually used is for a model rocket recovery chute (here)
To test, we dropped our parachute from the top of a fire escape at Mary Lyon (where we we building at the time.) We did find more adjustments were necessary, and after fixing all the bugs, and finding the optimal way to drop the parachute so it would inflate the fastest, we decided we were finished.
Although the chute didn't inflate as well as during our tests, our final drop time from the second floor of Hicks was 4.72 seconds (Second place free fall time).