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How do temperature changes affect a tuning fork's frequency?Featured science projectScience project video

Materials

The materials required for this science fair project:
- A tuning fork (640 Hz)
- A sound sensor and scope
- A beaker
- Some water
- A stove
- A refrigerator
- An infrared thermometer

Procedure

1. For this experiment, the independent variable is the temperature of the tuning fork. The dependent variable is the resonant frequency of the tuning fork. This is determined by measuring the frequency with a frequency sensor and scope. The constants (control variables) are the resonant frequency of the tuning fork, the material of the tuning fork and the dimensions of the tuning fork.

2. The tuning fork temperature will be varied at 0°C, 25°C, 50°C, 75°C and 100°C.

3. The tuning fork is kept overnight in the freezer of the refrigerator so that its temperature will be 0°C. The next day, the frequency sensor and scope are first set up to take the measurements. The tuning fork is taken out of the freezer and the temperature is checked with the infrared thermometer. After confirming the temperature, a slight knock is made on the tines and the frequency is measured and calculated on the scope. The temperature and frequency of the tuning fork  are recorded in the table given below.

4. The tuning fork is allowed to return to room temperature of 25°C and a slight knock is made again on the tines and the frequency is measured and calculated on the scope. The temperature and frequency  are again recorded in the table given below.

5. The beaker is filled with water and placed over the stove. The tuning fork is placed inside the beaker. Once the temperature of the water reaches 50°C, the tuning fork is taken out of the water and procedure 4 is repeated.

6. Procedures 4 and 5 are repeated at 75°C and 100°C and the readings are recorded in the table.

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Complexity level:
9
Project cost ($):
20
Time required:
1 day to prepare, 1 day for the science project experiment
Material availability:
Easily found
Safety concerns:

None