PhysicsLAB MCAS Physics Exams
MCAS 2014 Session 2

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A person pushes a couch across a wooden floor. What force changes when the couch first begins to move?
 
A 4000 kg truck is moving north at 8 m/s, and a 1200 kg car is moving north at 30 m/s. Which of the following statements best compares the truck and the car?



 
A wave with a wavelength of 3.2 m is generated in a pond. The frequency of the wave is 0.60 Hz. What is the speed of this wave?
 
Sunlight heats a dark rock. A snake then moves onto the rock in order to increase its body temperature. Which of the following sequences represents how heat energy is transferred from the Sun to the rock to the snake?
 
The circuit shown below has two resistors in series.
 
 
Which of the following equations represents the current flowing through the two resistors?
 
A person runs 3 km north. One hour later, she runs 3 km south. Which of the following statements describes the person’s complete trip?



 
The diagram below shows a representation of two different waves.
 
 
Which of the following classifies wave X and wave Y?



 
The picture below shows what a straight pipe looks like in a container of water when viewed from the side.
 
 
What is happening in this example as light travels from the water into the air?
 
Which of the following is a difference between electromagnetic waves and mechanical waves?



 
The diagram below shows a circuit with a light bulb, an ammeter, and a 12 V battery.
 
 
The light bulb is lit for 30 s. The ammeter displays a current of 0.60 A. What is the power rating for this circuit?
 
The diagram below shows a section of a roller coaster track. Five points on the track are labeled.
 
 
Between which two points will the roller coaster’s gravitational potential energy be converted into kinetic  energy?
 
Thermal energy is added to a sample of 15°C water. Which of the following quantities must increase?
 
Which of the following statements best describes the current flowing through the resistors in this circuit?
 



 
Grains and spices are irradiated with gamma rays to kill most of the bacteria or fungi that are normally  present. Although microwaves are another form of radiation, the properties of these waves do not make them as useful as gamma rays for sterilizing food. In which of the following ways do gamma rays differ from microwaves?



 
A space station moves in a circular orbit around Earth. Which of the following statements describes the centripetal force acting on the space station?



 
Which of the following is an example of an object that could have a net force greater than zero acting on it?



 
What is the purpose of the wire coil in an electromagnet?



 
A student conducted two investigations using a toy car and microphones, as shown below.
 
 
The toy car contained a buzzer. The microphones were used to record the frequency of sound. In investigation 1, the buzzer frequency was measured while the toy car was at rest. In investigation 2, the toy car was in motion and the observed frequency was measured in front of and behind the car. Which of the following graphs represents the frequency recorded by each microphone?



 
The graph below represents the motion of a car.
 
 
Based on the graph, which of the following statements describes the motion of the car?
 



 
 
 
Open-Response Questions
  • BE SURE TO ANSWER AND LABEL ALL PARTS OF THE QUESTION.
  • Show all your work (diagrams, tables, or computations) in your Student Answer Booklet.
  • If you do the work in your head, explain in writing how you did the work.
 
 
Refer to the following information for the next four questions.

A 50 kg student climbs 3 m to the top of a set of stairs.
 
 
a. Calculate the change in the student’s gravitational potential energy from the bottom to the top of the stairs. Show your calculations and include units in your answer.
 

b. How much total work does the student do while climbing the stairs? Show your calculations or explain your reasoning. Include units in your answer.
 

It takes the student 30 seconds to climb to the top of the stairs.
 
c. What is the average power generated by the student climbing the stairs? Show your calculations and include units in your answer.
 

The next day the student carries a 10 kg backpack up the same stairs and again takes 30 seconds to reach the top of the stairs.
 
d. Is the average power you calculated in part (c) greater than, less than, or equal to the average power the student generated the next day? Explain your answer.
 

Refer to the following information for the next three questions.

A person brings a cup of hot chocolate (70°C) into a room (20°C) and places a metal spoon (20°C) into the hot chocolate.
 
a. Describe what happens to the temperatures of the hot chocolate, the spoon, and the air in the room after 10 minutes. Explain your answer.
 

b. Identify and describe the primary method of heat energy transfer (conduction, convection, or radiation) between each of the following:
 
  • the hot chocolate and the spoon
  • the hot chocolate and the air in the entire room
 
 

c. At what point will the net transfer of heat energy stop?
 

Refer to the following information for the next four questions.

 A 10 N force is applied to a 6 kg box, as shown below.
 
 
Assume the system is frictionless.
a. Determine the weight of the box in newtons. Show your calculations and include units in your answer.
 

b. Draw a force diagram for the box. Include labels and represent the relative magnitude of each force.
 

c. Determine the acceleration of the box. Show your calculations and include units in your answer.
 

Now assume friction is introduced into the system.
 
d. Describe one change to this system that would allow it to achieve the same acceleration as the frictionless system.
 




 
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