Weightlessness In Free Fall - Mass On Spring

Purpose

To demonstrate weightlessness in free fall.

Equipment

Mass on spring, as photographed.

Images

c4-53

Description

When suspended by the end opposite the mass, the spring extends because of the weight of the mass attached. However, when the spring is released and allowed to fall freely, the system becomes weightless and the spring immediately contracts.

References

J. B. Cashatt, et. al., Weightlessness in free fall, AJP 43(2), 191, (1975). Larry Jensen, Apparent weight changes in an elevator, TPT 14, 436-439, (1976). S. K. Chakarvarti, A demonstration on weightlessness, TPT 16, 391, (1978).