A simple dynamics experiment based on acoustic emission

M. L. Nagurka

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


This paper describes a simple experiment well suited for an undergraduate course in mechanical measurements and/or dynamics, in which physical information is extracted from an acoustic emission signature. In the experiment, a ping-pong ball is dropped onto a hard table surface and the audio signal resulting from the ball-table impacts is recorded. The times between successive bounces, or "flight times", are used to determine the height of the initial drop and the coefficient of restitution of the impact. The experiment prompts questions about modeling the dynamics of a simple impact problem, including the use of the coefficient of restitution and the importance of accounting for aerodynamic effects.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)229-239
Number of pages11
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1 Feb 2002
Externally publishedYes


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