In small groups, the task was to design and create a hemisphere parachute and compose an experiment to test one of the three variables, either Mass, Size (surface area) or Aperture (vent size). The groups parachute had a surface area of 108x64cm and was cut into a rectangle shape with 60cm long strings attached to each corner of the parachute. The experiment would be carried out by releasing the parachute from the top floor of C block, which was a height of approximately 10 metres. The group chose the variable of mass to examine the overall effect on the parachutes flight time. Each increment of mass would increase by 50g and be dropped successfully three times. From this, a results table was composed in order to determine the effects of the flight time and how the chosen variable changed the outcome of the experiment.
Parachutes have played major role in advancements in society for a long time, for a number of reasons. Not only for those thrill seeking adrenaline junkies but also for space expeditions, care packages and even dropping soldiers into war zones. A parachute is a device used to slow the motion of an object through an atmosphere by creating drag, or in the case of air parachutes, aerodynamic lift. Depending on the situation, parachutes are used with a variety of loads, including people, food, equipment, and space capsules. The word "parachute" comes from the French prefix paracete, which meant literally "that which protects against a fall". (AIAA, 2015) A parachute works because of a large surface area made by the material that exhibits air resistance and that helps break the fall by acting against the tug of gravity (friction caused by air). When the opposing force of the air resistance balances out the downward force of gravity the object will no longer gain speed, it will have reached terminal velocity. A free-falling object has an acceleration of 9.8 m/s/s, downward (on Earth). This numerical value for the...