# Extended Essay Physics

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Hi!

I'm doing my EE in physics and I am not sure if my topic is suitable. Is an investigation of the damping effect in a pendulum appropriate for an EE?

Thanks

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The damped pendulum is a system that looks deceptively simple but which (when nonlinearities are taken into account) is rather complex. Perhaps a more favourable choice for your EE would be a system that looks complex but actually has fewer subtleties?

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But is it ok if I write an experimental extended essay on damped pendulum?? maybe discussing the energy?

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I'm sure you could write an interesting essay, but making very precise measurements of decay curves could involve some practical difficulties unless your school lab has excellent instrumentation.

See, for example:

http://arxiv.org/pdf...ics/0306081.pdf

Perhaps you should discuss that aspect with your physics teacher before committing to the topic?

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I was thinking of finding a relationship between energy and probably the damping coefficient. Do you think this is a good research topic? I also need to check exactly what we have in our lab.

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Yes, it would be wise to check that your lab has suitable equipment before you decide to do a Physics EE on a damped pendulum. Just building and calibrating an accurate, sensitive and frictionless transducer to input the pendulum position to your computer could prove quite challenging, considering that the whole EE is only supposed to involve about 40 hours of work!

Bear in mind that even for an experimental EE you do have to explore the theory relating the parameters that you measure. In the case of a damped pendulum, even after making simplifying assumptions you would have to solve the equation of motion iteratively. What kind of damping would you apply to the pendulum, and how do you plan to derive the damping coefficient to compute decay curves to compare with your measured ones?

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I checked with my teacher and she said that I can use a rotary motion sensor for the damped pendulum. I was interested in analyzing the energy loss of a viscous damped pendulum system by looking at the exponential decay of the pendulum and try to find some generalizations

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That's splendid if you already have a suitable transducer, pinkopal.

Good luck with your EE!

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