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Q & A: simple harmonic motion

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Most recent answer: 06/07/2017
Q:
Hey i am Yuval from Israel,This comming summer I am about to build some kind of mechanism in a scouts summer camp.I am trying to think about what structure i can build to make a harmonic motion, since i want a element that i am building to go up and down.since a spring or pendulum isn't a available option in the scouts i am asking for your help.the only thing i mannaged to think about is creating an swings that in each side of it there is weight and one of the weights is milimeter from the ground and the other one is on the top of my mechanism, then if i drop the upper weight it will become a swing, but since i want it as a harmonic motion i am affraid that the swing will be balanced realy fast.I wanted to ask if you have any idea who might help me to make this mechanismThank you!
- Yuval Hirschmann (age 16)
Holon, Israel.
A:

Sure, weights attached to something with a thin rope will make a form of pendulum and should work well. The problem that any oscillator won't go forever but gradually run down due to friction is shared by all oscillators.

Another type of oscillator would be a torsion pendulum. A weight tied to a string will twist back and forth if you give it a small initial twist.

Mike W.

 


(published on 06/07/2017)

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