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Get to Know the Math Behind the Cavendish Gravity Experiment

Cavendish Gravity Experiment Math Explained

By Andrew Bennett

Gravity Demo 3.0 Is Underway

This video marks the beginning of my third dive into the Cavendish experiment. Before now, I've created devices that could potentially show the effects of gravitation between small objects. However, I have never eliminated enough sources of uncertainty to make that definitive or to derive a value for G. That is the goal of this summer's physics project.

Math Behind Cavendish Experiment Explained

In this video, I work through the math for determining G from the Cavendish gravity experiment. This math includes the Law of Universal Gravitation, equations for torque (from both a point force and a twisted string), the formula for the period of a torsional oscillator, and some equations for calculating rotational inertia. The end result is an ugly equation that will get us an important value: the Universal Gravitational Constant.

More Info on My Newest Gravity Demo

I plan to spend a large chunk of the summer on this latest design. Before now, this has been more of a classroom demo than an honest attempt at making a measurement for G. I am working toward and expecting much more reliable results with this design, and with it being in an environment that I can control more completely.

If you're interested, please remember to subscribe to my blog and YouTube channel, so you won't miss the updates along the way! I am also using this as an opportunity to improve the production value of my videos and create something that I'm proud of.

I look forward to hearing any ideas and critiques, so don't hesitate to leave a comment below.


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