The Marvellous Marble Drop

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Manipulate the beams with the scrollbars. The left one changes the length of the beam and the right one changes its angle. Select which beam to change with the top buttons. Push drop to drop the marble. The small blue arrow shows its starting point. The e lapsed time will be displayed in milliseconds in the lower left hand portion of the screen.

Can you make the marble cross the finish line in exactly ten seconds (10000 milliseconds?).

Some questions to ponder:

  1. Is the physics model realistic? Does the marble fall the way a real marble would?

  2. Is the marble made of an elastic material (rubber), or an inelastic material? How can you tell?

  3. The marble is modelled to be an infinitely small point, but drawn as if it has a finite size. Assume it is a heavy marble. When rolling, would it accelerate faster if it was large or small? If it was solid or hollow?

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