Investigatiing Whether the Thickness of Lead Inside a Pencil Affects the Resistance

Investigatiing Whether the Thickness of Lead Inside a Pencil Affects the Resistance

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Investigatiing Whether the Thickness of Lead Inside a Pencil Affects the Resistance

Aim

The aim of this investigation is to find out whether the thickness of
a lead inside a pencil affects the level of resistance when connected
to and electrical circuit.

Prediction

I think that lower resistance will be shown in the results from
pencils with thinner lead because the current will ba able to pass
through the lead easier.

Preliminary Test

Our preliminary test was for the purpose of finding out whether doing
the investigation in different ways would affect the results. We
started with putting a high current through a pencil first, taking our
results, and then lowering the voltage. Then we did the opposite,
starting with a low voltage, taking our results, and re-testing with a
higher voltage.

Diagram

page 1

Results

With the results found from the preliminary test, we decided to go
from low voltage to high voltage in the main test. This is because
when starting with a high voltage the pencil lead get hotter faster,
which affect the resistance, therefore affecting the results when a
lower voltage is tested after.

page 2

Main Investigation

Apparatus

In the investigation we used seven different pencils, labelled A to G,
an ammeter, a voltmeter, two connectors, and electrical supply and
wires to connect the circuit. (see diagram on page 1)

Method

Firstly we made the circuit as shown in the diagram on page 1, making
sure nothing was connected to the power point until the circuit was
complete. We then set the voltmeter to 1V (as close as we could get.
The reading showed 1.23V) Placing pencil A between the connectors, we
took the first reading. Whilst recording the result we removed the
pencil to prevent it from overheating, and therefore affecting the
results. When taking the second reading, we turned the pencil around
to see if that would make any difference. Again, whilst recording the

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results, we removed the pencil from the circuit. For the third reading
we turned the pencil around, recorded the results, and changed the
voltage to 2V. For each voltage up to 5V we did the same as we did for
1V. This was repeated in pencils B-G. We kept the tests the same all
through the investigation, to make it a fair test.

Results

Pencil A

page 3

Pencil B

Pencil C

Pencil D

page 4

Pencil E

Pencil F

Pencil G

page 5
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