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Parachutes falling


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#1
simonshaft

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I had did this experiment concerning about the parachutes that and my objective is to fin out which parachute will fall faster, the plastic parachute or the cloth parachute. Below are some more categorised explanations

_______________________________________________________________________________
MANIPULATED
*PLASTIC*
PVC plastic (like the one used as to cover tables)
At first
*CLOTH*
Linen cloth (like the ones used to cover the bed)
Note that there aint any holes (some purposedly made, usually for decoration of tables, etc.) on the cloth which by all means its all plain linen

CONSTANTS
String: A strong but quite heavy string used to sew shoes
There are eight positions (octagonal-like) which is used to tied to the load

Load: A masking tape

________________________________________________________________________________

Assuming that the reading was taken when there is no wind blowing, which will fall first?

When I launched it from a 3rd floor building the plastic parachute falls with time taken of:
4.39, 4.96, 4.74, 4.09, 4.94 (in seconds)
The linen parachute falls at a time of:
5.733, 4.47, 5.32, 6.45, 6.24 (in seconds)
________________________________________________________________________________
_

So, is the reading somwhat logical, considering that the surface area of cloth is actually more than of plastic?
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#2
Troy

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It sounds logical to me, the plastic is a more dense material and therefore would move air out of the way faster... The cloth is more of a breathable fabric, so the air would more like get stuck in it, and slow it down...

If that makes any sense to anybody else!

Troy
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#3
dsenette

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right principle troy but i would think it would work the other direction....i would think the more dense air would hold more air in the chute thus slowing you down more than the cloth one that allows air to pass through it.....

as a crude example take a pillow case and open it up and drag it through the air...then get a plastic bag of about the same size and see which one offers more drag
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#4
Troy

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right principle troy but i would think it would work the other direction....i would think the more dense air would hold more air in the chute thus slowing you down more than the cloth one that allows air to pass through it.....

as a crude example take a pillow case and open it up and drag it through the air...then get a plastic bag of about the same size and see which one offers more drag

You know, that does sound right also... I was thinking along the lines of the plastic being more "smooth" along the surface, therefore the air could "slip" around and out of the way quicker...

Er, ahhh, hhhmmmm...

:)
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#5
wannabe1

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I'll bet turbulence is the overbearing factor.

The coated fabric would force more air to spill out under the canopy which would cause turbulence at the top. This would be like placing a weight on the top of the chute. The more porous linen chute would allow air to flow through the air foil and this air flow would reduce any turbulence over the chute.

This is why most parachutes have a hole at the top....to allow the air coming through the hole to minimize the turbulence and increase the lift. Para-sails eliminate the turbulence by slipping through the air like a wing rather than compressing air beneath the canopy as it falls as a parachute does.
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