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Energy engineering

Fluid mechanic

Experiment ( 2 )
Determination of liquid
viscosity by stock's method

Name:bwar kazim

Lecture, Mr. Kawa

Second year
This report discusses the methods with which the viscosity
of liquid glycerin is determined, and uses the data to
validate Stokes’ Law. Two experiments were performed:
the viscosity of glycerin was determined using a rotational
viscometer, and the data used to validate Stokes’ Law
was collected using a falling ball viscometer. Results
showed that either method showed significant error and
did not validate Stokes’ Law; though the revised Stokes’
Law equation gave much more accurate results for the
viscosity determined from the falling ball viscometer.

The experiments performed were an exploration of the

properties of liquid glycerin and to experimentally
determine its viscosity. Viscosity can be described as a
fluid’s resistance to shear strain when submitted to a
shear stress. High viscosity liquids will be especially
prone to resisting shear stress. This idea of resistance to
flow was taken a step further in the first experiment and
the data collected was used to verify Stokes’ Law for a
sphere falling in a liquid. In experiment, a falling marble
was dropped in glycerin and its terminal velocity measured
for use in calculating the drag force. For experiment, a
rotational viscometer was used to find glycerin’s viscosity
at laboratory room temperature. Stokes’ Law is only valid
for non-turbulent flow, so Reynolds number for the falling
ball viscometer was also determined.
Stokes’ Law and Reynolds Number

Stokes’ Law is a proposition that relates the drag force

experienced by a falling sphere to the sphere’s (constant)
velocity in a liquid of known viscosity.

where Fd is the drag force, is the liquid viscosity, V is the

(terminal) velocity, and d is the diameter of the sphere.

Since the sphere is falling with constant velocity there is a

balance of forces that result in no acceleration.

Where Fdis the drag force on the sphere, Fb is the buoyant

force, and mg is the weight of the sphere (mass multiplied
by the acceleration due to gravity).

This buoyant force experienced by the sphere can be

described as:
where is the buoyant force, is the liquid’s density, and d is
the sphere’s diameter.

The weight of the sphere can be described as:

where m is the sphere’s mass, g is the acceleration due to

gravity, is the sphere’s density, and d is the sphere’s

Thus, the drag force can be related by Equations 3 and 4:

where Fd is the drag force, is the sphere’s density, is the

fluid’s density, d is the sphere’s diameter, and g is the
acceleration due to gravity.
Stokes’ Law and Reynolds Number

The tools required for this experiment included a set of dial

calipers, 2 spheres, a Mettler-Toledo balance, a stop-watch, a
meter stick, a flexible pick-up tool, and a 2L graduated cylinder
filled with liquid glycerin. The temperature of the room was noted
for later use in finding the tabulated values of viscosity and density
of the glycerin. For each sphere, the diameter was measured
using the dial calipers, and their mass found using the Mettler-
Toledo balance. After filling the graduated cylinder with glycerin,
the distance between two positions sufficiently far enough away
from the top was measured. Using the pick-up tool and stop
watch, each sphere was dropped into the liquid glycerin and the
time to travel the measured distance recorded.

This distance covered divided by the time of travel gave

us the approximate terminal velocity of each sphere. After
using linear interpolation to find the value of the glycerin’s
viscosity and density at the room temperature of 24
degrees Celsius, the values for buoyant force, drag force,
Reynolds number, and the Stokes’ value for drag force
were calculated using Equations 1, 3, 5 and 6. Using
these values, the percent difference between the
experimentally determined drag force and the drag force
according to Stokes’ Law was calculated.
The Reynolds number must be determined in order for us
to determine whether Stokes’ Law is even applicable to
the experiment. If Reynolds number is low enough,
Stokes’ Law should hold and we can validate it by
comparing the drag force according to the experiment to
the drag force calculated using Stokes’ Law.
By equating the experimental drag force to the theoretical
Stokes’ drag force and rearranging, we were able to
determine the experimental viscosity of the glycerin:

where is the experimentally determined viscosity, d is the

sphere diameter, is the sphere density, is the glycerin
density, g is the acceleration due to gravity, and V is the

Liquid Ball density Fluid Radius Velocity Dynamic

1 density of ball of ball viscosity

Heavy 1.87g/cm3 0.87g/cm3 0.4mm 7.87cm/s 0.046 Ns/m2

Middle 1.86 g/cm3 0.857 0.4 mm 6.53cm/s 0.053Ns/m2


Light 1.87g/cm3 0.82 0.4mm 7.87 0.046Ns/m2

g/cm3 cm/s
1- What the effect of fluid temperature on
viscosity value?
A/ With high temperatures, viscosity decreases in liquids.

2- What the effect of fluid density on

viscosity value?
A/If the density of fluid increase so the viscosity increase

3- What the effect of ball radius change on

viscosity value?
A/ The viscosity is directly with the radius of the ball

4- What the effect of ball density on

viscosity value?
A/ The viscosity of the fluid is directly with the ball density.

5- What the effect of ball velocity on

viscosity value?
A/ If the velocity of the ball increase, the viscosity of the
fluid is decrease.
And if the velocity of the ball decrease, the viscosity of
fluid increase. It is mean the relationship between them is
6- What the effect of ball weight on
viscosity value?
A/The relationship between viscosity and weight of the ball
is directly.

7- How we can get the value of ball

A/ Get the mass of the ball by the electronic balance and
get the volume by this role 4/3 (3.14) (r3).
And then we will mass divided by the volume to determine
the density.

8- How we can measure the tube glass

A/ we can find diameter by use rules or anything to

9- What the effect of fluid quantity on ball

A/ No effect.

10- should the terminal velocity of two

different size spheres be the same?
A/ no it isn't same velocity. Because the velocity of the
sphere connect to the weight.
11- Dose a larger sphere have a higher
terminal velocity?
A/ no, the size of the sphere is directly with the velocity.3-
the viscosity is directly with the radius of the ball.

12- Should the viscosity found for two

different size sphere
Be the same? why or why not ?

A/ yes because for one fluid is one viscosity and don’t

change with properties of two different sphere.

13- What are the shortcomings of this


A/ It cannot get the result exactly.

14- Why should temperature be recorded?

A/ because temperature effect the viscosity.

15- Can this method be used for gases?

A/ no it cannot.