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Applying Archimedes Principle

Learning Outcomes
By the end of this lesson you should be able to Relate buoyant force of a floating object to its weight Solve problems involving Archimedes Principle

Cartesian Diver
Concentrate on the bottle Observe carefully. What do you see?

Archimedes of Syracuse (~ 287 212 BC)

Greek Mathematician, Astronomer, Philosopher, Physicist and Engineer. Discover the principles of Density and Buoyancy Invented the Archimedes' screw

Archimedes Principle

States that a body that is or . Submerged in a fluid will experienced a force equal to the of the fluid displaced.

Activity 1

In groups of 3 or 4
Try to explain what happens when the bottle is squeezed and when it is released. Draw diagrams indicating the forces acting on it to clarify your answers. When the bottle is squeezed . When the bottle is released


Cartesian Diver How it works

As you squeeze the bottle,

you increase the pressure everywhere in the bottle.

forces more water into the eyedropper, compressing the air in the eyedropper.

The higher pressure

This causes the dropper to displace less water, thus decreasing the buoyant force and causing it to sink. When you release the sides of the bottle,

the pressure decreases, and the air inside the bulb expands once again.

This causes more water to be displaced thus increasing the buoyant force and the diver rises.

Activity 2 Cup Trick

Full Empty 1. Will the empty cup float on the water filled cup?

2. Will the 1/3 full cup float on the 2/3 filled cup?

3. Will the 2/3 full cup float on the 1/3 filled cup?

No Prediction Actual result Explanation float or sink float or sink 1 2

Cup Trick - Explanation

The amount of water in the second cup give the weight of the cup. When it is put on the first cup it will displace the same volume of water. Therefore the weight of water displaced is equal to the weight of the second cup. This gives as the Law of floatation

A floating body will displace it own weight of water.


What have we learnt?

Consider a floating object

What can you say about the relation between the buoyant force and weight of the water displaced? What can you say about the buoyant force and the weight of the object?