Product number: HFC33

The HFC33 apparatus consists of a 1.45metre long precision air track manufactured from sturdy lightweight extrusion. A blower forces air down through the extrusion and out through miniature holes running along its length. This creates a ‘cushion’ of air onto which two trolleys can me moved. The air ‘cushion’ creates a near frictionless environment for the trolleys to run on which is crucial in preserving momentum in the Conservation of Momentum theory.

The trolleys can be set onto each other in different modes, i.e. one stationary whilst one is moving, both moving towards each other. This allows the momentum before and after to be monitored to see if the conservation of linear momentum has remained.

The trolleys can accept additional masses onto them to vary the experimental parameters. The trolleys are projected along the air track by means of a catapult device with buffers installed to stop the trolleys if necessary.

Light gates on the track monitor the timing of each trolley and a linear scale allows the distance to be recorded and the timing gate positions to be accurately set. This way the velocity of each trolley can be recorded before and after collisions. The light gates trigger a timer which records the timing during the experiment.

Specifications and resources

2 x Trolley: 120mm long
2 x Timing gates
Event timer range: 1mS to 999,999s
Event timer: Continuous or start/stop mode
Track linear scale: 1mm resolution
Air blower: Flow controlled