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Deanna Garcia

Physics Lab
October 3, 2016

Archimedes Principle

The purpose of the lab was to apply Archimedes Principle to determine the density of
rocks. Archimedes Principle states that the buoyant force on an object is equal to the weight of
the fluid displaced by the object.

The principle allows the buoyancy of an object immersed in water to be weighed. When
an object is weighed in fluid, the object experiences a buoyant force of the fluid and weighs less
in the fluid than in air. This loss in weight is equal to the weight of the fluid displaced by the
immersed object. If the net force is positive the object will rise, if negative it will sink, and if
zero the object is neutrally buoyant it remains in place without rising or sinking.

During the experiment we attached a metal weight to a string and connected the string to
a spring balance. The metal weight was then suspended in the air, and submerged in water, to
find the weight in grams while connected to the spring balance. We also used a triple beam
balance to collect the weight in grams of the metal object.

For our data collection we found the mass of three different metal objects on both the
spring scale and triple beam balance. We also found the mass of all three objects while
submerged in water using the spring scale. From our data collection we were able to find the
mass and volume of water displaced by all three objects. These measurements were needed to
calculate the density of the objects.

When all three metal objects were weighed we found that their weights on the triple beam
balance and spring scale were almost the same. There was a difference of approximately 1 gram
for two objects, and a difference of 8 grams for the third object. When the three object were
weighed while immersed in water we found that the objects were lighter. Metal object three had
the highest mass of water displaced because it was the heaviest object.

One would float better in sea water than in fresh water because of the salt. The salt adds
to the mass of the water and makes the water denser than it would be without salt. If a cup is
almost full and the ice begins to metal the water level will not change. When the ice melts in the
cup the mass will not change. Large mountains are floating in a dense semifluid material, called
the asthenosphere. The asthenosphere acts like a fluid and provides a buoyant force, so the
mountain can sink into it deeply and provide the buoyant force.

I found the lab experiment to be informative and educational. I did not realize that an
object would weigh less in water, and that the loss of weight would be equal to the weight of the
fluid displaced. I also learned how to calculate buoyant force, volume, and density.