Attention teachers and students:
Maybe your Physics curriculum is looking rather boring. Or, you need a science fair experiment really quick! An accelerometer is a versatile tool for making fun and informative science experiments. First, we recommend learning to use "R" for analyzing the data. R is a powerful scripting language used commonly by scientists to analyze large data sets. We provide several R scripts in our example applications. R is free to download from cran.r-project.org. Once you have R, here are a several interesting experiments to consider trying:
Vibration Analysis of New Tires. An X2-2 logger is used to evaluate the vibration performance of new tires on a Mazda3 car. An R script analyzes the data to show the new tires reduced the overall vibration by 15-25%.
Calculate gravity using a simple pendulum. The accelerometer logger is attached to a swinging pendulum. The data is analyzed to deterime the period of oscillation, which is then used to calculate gravity.
Determine the resonant frequency of a 2-liter bottle. This fun experiment shows how a Helmoholtz resonator works and how the volume determines the frequency of resonance.
Track the g's of a roller coaster. Load the kids into the station wagon and head to Walley World with an accelerometer. Fun and excitement is sure to ensue. We provide an R script here to analyze and plot the motion of a roller coaster.
Example Applications using Accelerometers
This simple experiment uses a 2-liter bottle and an X6-2 accelerometer to demonstrate Helmholtz's equation for a resonating a cavity. The test procedure is then applied to a subwoofer speaker to determine the enclosure resonance frequency and speaker performance.
Counting Freight Trains
An X2-1 high sensitivity accelerometer logger is used to monitor the traffic on a railway and provide the spectral response of a passing freight train.
Cruise Ship At Sea
An X2-2 captures the subtle engine noise on a cruise ship. The vibration is compared between an interior and an exterior cabin.
Monitoring Your Clothes Dryer with the SSP-x Accelerometer
Learn how to use a Raspberry Pi and the SSP-x to monitor the status of your clothes dryer. When the dryer is finished, a text message is sent to your smartphone.
The X2-1 logger was used to detect when water flushed into a toilet. Actually, this experiment was unexpectedly interesting.
Analysis of Swimming Performance
An X6-2mini mounted to a swimmer's forearm during a 50m swim provides acceleration and arm orientation data to illustrate the swimmer's performance.
So much has changed over the years. Has the gravataional constant, or the mass of the earth changed the local gravitational field lately? We decided to perform this simple pendulum experiment and find out.
PDF version of report here:Calculating the Acceleration of Gravity Using an Accelerometer Data Logger.pdf)
Ever wonder when and where your shipment was damaged? Our accelerometer data logger products can record the movements of a package during shipment and record with precise time when an impact occurred. See the results of a 50 lb wooden crate shipped from Gulfport, MS to Port Edwards, WI.
Here, an X6-2 is used to compare the vibration characteristics of two residential sized central air conditioners and illustrate the propagation of the vibration through the walls.
Ever wonder how much standing, sitting, and walking occurs during a typical day at Walt Disney World? Using a GCDC USB Accelerometer device, data was collected and analyzed to provide a graphical representation of activity at a theme park. Also, see the acceleration characteristics of several popular rides at Walt Disney World. Read about it all here. Then, continue on to read about experiences at Universal Studios Orlando.
The data logging capabilities of the X6-1 and X6-2 allow unique “finger printing” of human activities, such as walking, running and house chores.
A detailed look at the Incredible Hulk roller coaster ride at Universal Studios' Islands of Adventure.
An X250-1 impact sensor is used to show the acceleration, flight, and impact of an arrow.
RC Airplane Flight Dynamics
The unfortunate demise of an RC airplane is recorded with an X6-2 accelerometer.
Impact Force of a Soccer Ball
See the force felt when a soccer ball bounces off an athlete's head.
Example Applications using a Barometer
Strap a B1100-1 barometric pressure data logger to a kite and see how high a kite flies.
Monitor the altitude and ascension rate of an elevator while listening to soft soothing instrumental re-mixes of pop-music.
RC Airplane Altitude
See an RC airplane sore to 430 feet, perform loops, and a final power-dive into an awaiting oak tree. Post-crash analysis is compiled using synchronized data collected by the B1100-1 and X6-2 data loggers.
Pressure Profile for a Car
We drove a 2008 Honda Civic down the highway to see how the aerodynamics of the vehicle affected the pressure on different areas of the car.