Acceleration and Top Speed
Objective: Determine your top speed and rate of acceleration from a
Equipment: Pasco DataStudio©
motion detector or other timing device
1. Line yourself up with the
motion detector near the back of the room.
Your partner will hit the Start
button and cue you to start running to top speed as fast as you can. Be sure to run the designated line so that
you remain in line with the motion detector.
2. Print your graph from
the computer. This will be a
distance-time graph. Indicate on your
graph where you are accelerating and where your velocity is constant.
3. Determine where your velocity
is constant on the graph, draw a line to best fit this region, then find the
slope. Record this as your top speed in both m/s and km/hr.
4. Based on the time and distance to reach your top
speed, calculate your rate of acceleration in m/s2. Compare this value to the acceleration of
gravity (9.8 m/s2).
5. Compare your top speed with
the fastest ever recorded human speed of Donovan Bailey, 11.91 m/s.
6. If Donovan Bailey reaches top
speed in 3.00 seconds, what is his rate of acceleration?
7. On your graph, sketch a runner
with a rate of acceleration higher than yours and label as ahigher.
8. Accurately sketch a velocity vs time graph of your
motion out to 10 seconds.
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