Egg Drop Eggstravaganza
By: Katie O.

Our physics class conducted an experiment, the egg drop. This egg drop project was designed so that we could increase the time of impact for the egg by constructing a case. All the egg cases have about the same weight, but the time of impact was different. We needed to decrease the force, so that the egg wouldn’t break.

Description of egg case:

My egg case was a plastic container covered with many layers of bubble wrap, on the inside and outside. Inside the large container is a smaller plastic container, also covered in bubble wrap. The egg fit snuggly inside the small plastic container. A ribbon was tied around the outside of the container to assure that it was sealed.

What is momentum?

Why did the egg cases have approximately the same change in momentum when they hit the ground?

Momentum is the product of mass and velocity of an object. Momentum is how difficult it is to stop something. It is a vector quantity. The change in momentum is equal to the impulse.

The egg cases all had about the same change in momentum when they hit the ground because they all have about the same weight, therefor they have similar velocity’s.

 

What is impulse?

Why did all the egg cases have approximately the same impulse?

Impulse is the product of force and time interval during which a force acts. Impulse causes a change in momentum.

They all had about the same impulse because they all had about the same momentum, and impulse causes a change in momentum.

If all the egg cases had the same impulse, what varied with each egg case? Why?

The time of impact varied because they all have different padding and designs.

Did my egg break?

Yes, my egg broke. My egg broke because the smaller container didn’t contain enough bubble wrap. If I had added more padding, the force on the ground wouldn’t have broken the egg.

Reflect on your design as a scientist or engineer would. How could you improve your design? What new design or materials would you try in the future?

I could improve my design by completely taking the second container out. The egg would have been more secure just in the large container, completely covered in bubble wrap. If I had made my case this way, I believe that the time of force would have been decreased, and the egg wouldn’t have broken.

Real Life Applications:

Airbags help save people in car crashes because they increase the time of impact when the person goes forward. The increase in time lowers the amount of force exerted on the person.

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When you ride with a punch you increase the time of impact, which decreases the force of impact on your face.

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Football players wear padding so they increase the time of impact and decrease the force, making it less painful when you get tackled.

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A parachuter bends their knees when they reach the ground so that they increase the time and decrease the force of impact, so that they can return safely to the ground.

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In gymnastics you use mats to increase the time and decrease the force of impact so that if they fall they won’t get hurt.