Advanced Physics Through Inquiry 1 Teacher Guide

(PS-2848)

Teacher guide featuring 15 labs designed for Advanced Placement Physics 1.

Resonance and Standing Waves

Lab Summary

Students use a resonance air column, tuning forks, and the principles of resonance and standing waves for a pipe with one closed end to experimentally determine a value for the speed of sound in air.

Theory

How can standing waves be used to determine the speed of sound in air? Use sound waves traveling into a tube with one closed end and the principles of resonance and standing waves to experimentally determine the speed of sound in air.

Method

In the Structured version of this lab activity, students use a tube with one closed end and adjustable length to identify the length of tube required to establish the first harmonic (one standing wave with one-quarter wavelength inside the tube) for 5 different sound wave frequencies. Students then plot a graph of sound wave frequency versus inverse tube length. This graph displays a linear relationship to which students apply a line of best fit whose slope is equal to one-fourth the speed of sound in air. Using the slope, students calculate the speed of sound in air.

Sensors / Equipment Used:

Resonance Air Column

(WA-9606)

Resonance tube with plunger, node markers and detachable stands for performing waves and sound experiments.

Tuning Fork Set

(SE-7342)

Both rugged and economical aluminum tuning forks. Includes eight forks representing a full octave of frequencies.

Four Scale Meter Stick

(SE-8695)

A convenient measuring device that includes four different metric scales of various precision.

The Associated Bundle:

Advanced Physics 1 Expansion Bundle

(PS-2833)

Equipment and sensor expansion bundle for performing 7 experiments in the Advanced Physics through Inquiry 1 Teacher Guide.

Interface Required

This experiment may require software and an interface for data collection.