Featured in PASCO’s Advanced Physics Teacher Guide
This manual features over 30 College Board curriculum and AP Physics exam inspired lab activities.
Use a voltage sensor to determine the unknown capacitance of a capacitor in a simple RC circuit.
A simple RC circuit contains a capacitor with unknown capacitance. Determine this unknown value using the equipment provided and any relevant mathematic equations, diagrams, graphs, and tables, given that R = 220 kΩ and ε = 3 V.
Students gain experience conducting the following procedures:
Connecting the circuit as shown in Figure 1 using the components provided.
Continuously measuring voltage data across the resistor in the circuit as the capacitor charges through the batteries.
Converting the voltage data, V(t) to ln(V(t)) then plot ln(V(t)) versus t.
♦ Using a line of best fit to determine the slope (m = –1/RC) and the unknown capacitance in the circuit.
Batteries, D-cell - 2
This experiment may require software and an interface for data collection.