Skip to main content

Properties of a Wave with Simple Harmonic Motion

Profile picture for user PocketLab
Submitted by PocketLab on Thu, 06/01/2017 - 19:41


Simple Harmonic Motion is a periodic or oscillating motion where the forces of the movement cause a particular motion to continually repeat. The back and forth of a pendulum, like in an old grandfather clock, the ticking of a classic metronome, or the up and down movement a bungee jumper can all be examples of harmonic motion.
Using PocketLab you can investigate how to mathematically model harmonic motion through two classic examples, a swinging pendulum and a mass-spring system.


In this experiment, students will:
1. Use PocketLab’s gyroscope and the scientific method to discover what variables affect the harmonic motion of a swinging pendulum.
2. Use PocketLab’s accelerometer and the scientific method to discover how mass affects the harmonic motion of a mass-spring system.
3. Determine and describe how harmonic motion can be mathematically modeled through wave graphs.

Download PDF for complete lab activity


Pendulum and mass on a spring diagrams
Grade Level