#### Transcript Roller Coaster Physics

```Roller Coaster Physics
Draft Version
An exploration of energy
as it applies to the science of roller coasters
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slide corresponds to a
page in the “Roller Coaster
Physics Student Packet.”
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slide contains one or more
activities.
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Scream Roller Coaster at Six Flags
Magic Mountain Grand Opening
Thunder Dolphin in downtown
Tokyo, Japan has a 150 ft drop
The Nemesis roller coaster is Europe’s
first inverted coaster. It is locate in
Alton Towers, England.
See page 1 of the student packet
Cedar Point, Sandusky, Ohio. Built in
1976, it was the first roller coaster in
the world with 3 inversions.
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Potential energy is stored energy. It is the energy that an object
has because of its position or condition.
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A roller coaster on top of a hill, waiting to drop, has potential
energy.
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The roller coaster has the potential to move due to gravity. The
higher it is, the more potential energy it has.
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Potential energy can also be in the form
of stored fuel such as gasoline for a
car or food for a person.
Potential energy can change
(transform) into kinetic energy.
Potential energy
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Kinetic energy is the energy an object
has because of its motion.
The amount of kinetic energy an
object has is influenced by its mass
and speed
For example:
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A roller coaster that is full of people
has a greater amount of mass than
an empty roller coaster. A full roller
coaster has more energy and force.
This leads to a more thrilling and exciting ride!
The higher the first drop, the greater the speed and total energy the
roller coaster will have. A taller track gives the roller coaster has more
energy than a shorter one.
Kinetic enery
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Mechanical energy is the energy that
an object has because to its motion or
position.
An object that has mechanical energy
is able to do work and make something
move. Mechanical energy is important
in the operation of all moving things
including roller coasters, simple
machines and even you and me.
Mechanical energy is either kinetic
(the energy of motion) or potential
(stored energy).
Scenic Railway at Luna Park (Melbourne,
Australia), the world's oldest continuallyoperating roller coaster, built in 1912
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A system is a set of parts that are connected in some way.
The Law of Conservation of Energy states that energy can
not be created or destroyed in a system. Instead, it must be
converted or transformed into another type of energy.
Energy transformation is the process of changing
energy from one form to another.
An example of energy transformation is
what happens when you light a match.
The chemical energy stored in the match
is converted into heat energy and
light energy.
Forms of energy
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As a roller coaster moves along the tracks, mechanical
energy (energy related to motion) is changed to heat
energy.
Mechanical energy is changed to
heat energy because of
the friction between
the roller coaster and
the tracks. You can
feel the heat if you
touch the roller
coaster tracks.
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With each hill, a roller coaster transforms mechanical
energy into heat energy. As the ride continues, the coaster
has less and less mechanical energy.
The engineers who design roller coasters use math to
figure out how much mechanical energy is lost throughout
the ride. They make each hill that follows smaller to
compensate for this loss.
Eventually the roller
coaster loses most of its
mechanical energy and
is able to come to a safe
stop.
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Explore energy transformation
How roller coasters work
Roller coaster animation
Energy in a roller coaster ride
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A model is a representation of a system, object or
concept. Models are used to simplify and make things
easier to understand.
Mechanical engineers use models to envision their
creations. Mechanical engineers manipulate energy
using science and
math to build the
most exciting and
safe rides possible.
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Design a roller coaster
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Energy
Energy is the ability to do work. Energy is anything
that can make matter move or change.
Kinetic Energy
Potential Energy
Kinetic energy is the energy an object has because of
its motion.
Potential energy is stored energy.
Mechanical
Energy
Mechanical energy is the energy that an object has
because of its motion or position.
System
A system is a set of parts that are connected in some
way.
Energy
Transformation
Energy transformation is the process of changing
energy from one form to another.
Model
A model is a representation of a system, object or
concept. Models are used to simplify and make
things easier to understand.
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More roller coaster videos
How roller coasters work
The physics behind the fun
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See page 2 of the student packet
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See page 3 of the student packet
See page 7 - 9 of the student
packet
A roller coaster at dorney park
Essential Question #1
In what ways do kinetic
and potential energy
contribute to an object’s
mechanical energy?
See page 10 of the student packet
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Essential Question #2
What is the nature of energy?
See page 10 of the student packet
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Essential Question #3
How does energy change
forms?
See page 10 of the student packet
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Essential Question #4
What is the relationship
between potential and
kinetic energy?
See page 10 of the student packet
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Essential Question #5
How can you model
or diagram energy
transformations?
See page 10 of the student packet
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http://www.physicsclassroom.com
http://www.Brainpop.com
http://inquiry2energy.wikispaces.com/Forms+of+Energy
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_the_roller_coaster
http://science.howstuffworks.com/engineering/structural/roller-coaster.htm
http://teacherknowledge.wikispaces.com
http://en.allexperts.com/q/Physics-1358/2010/11/Roller-Coaster-Question.htm
http://davidguo-sph3u.blogspot.com/
http://www.mwit.ac.th/~physicslab/applet_04/physics_classroom/Class/energy/u5l2bb.html
http://www.ehow.com/how_7821557_draw-roller-coaster-demonstration-physics.html
http://mehdisprephysics.blogspot.com/2010/10/paper-roller-coaster-physics-project.html
http://www.coasterdynamics.com/CoasterDynamics/CLabIntro.html
http://www.erinfinnegan.com/sam/?cat=17
http://da771us.blogspot.com/
http://www.indiabix.com/engineering-mechanics/kinetics-of-a-particle-work-and-energy/013002
http://gallery.hd.org/_c/natural-science/match-igniting-AJHD.jpg.html
http://inquiry2energy.wikispaces.com/Forms+of+Energy
http://www.buzzle.com/articles/physics-of-roller-coasters.html
http://www.tcpalm.com/photos/galleries/2011/may/23/new-offerings-floridas-theme-parks/
http://www.learner.org/interactives/parkphysics/coaster/
http://fzxxprj.wikispaces.com/transformation+of+energy+in+a+roller+coaster
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