Newton's Second Law Virtual Lab Simulation | PraxiLabs

Newton's Second Law Virtual Lab Simulation

Physics | Mechanics

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General Aim

 Determination of the acceleration due to gravity. 


Newton's Second Law.

Learning Objectives ILO

  • State Newton’s Second Law.

  • Distinguish between the concepts of mass and weight, and perform calculations involving mass and weight.

  • Explore and analyze the relationship between force, mass, and acceleration (Newton’s Second Law).

  • Determine the acceleration due to gravity by using Newton’s second law of motion.

Theoretical Background

Newton's second law of motion belongs to the behavior of objects for which all existing forces are unbalanced. The second law states that the acceleration of an object is dependent upon two variables:-


  1. The Net Force Acting Upon the Object : the acceleration of an object depends directly upon the net force acting upon the object, As the force acting upon an object is increased, the acceleration of the object is increased.
  2. The Mass of the Object: the acceleration of an object depends inversely upon the mass of the object, As the mass of an object is increased, the acceleration of the object is decreased.



Newton's Second Law of Motion states that the acceleration of an object as produced by a net force is directly proportional to the magnitude of the net force, in the same direction as the net force, and inversely proportional to the mass of the object.
Newton’s Second Law is expressed mathematically as the following:
     F = ma where
 a: is the acceleration produced in a body.
 m: is the mass of the object
 F: is the applied force 


Principle Of Work

A cart attached to a pulley is placed on a frictionless track and a weight is placed on the pulley which results in moving the cart between the two photogates, the traveling time is recorded using a photogate timer.

The acceleration due to gravity can be calculated through the graphical relation between the acceleration of an object on the Y-axis and m/(m+M) on the X-axis which will result in a straight line, from the slope the acceleration due to gravity can be determined.

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