PhysicsLAB MCAS Physics Exams
MCAS 2015 Session 1

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The graph below represents how a car’s position changes over time.
Which of the following statements best describes the motion of the car between time 1 and time 2?

Object X is at rest on a horizontal sheet of ice. Object Y slides across the ice with an initial velocity of 10 m/s and collides with object X. Object Y stops and object X begins to move. Both objects have the same mass. Assume friction is negligible. Which of the following conclusions can be drawn from this information?

Which of the following sets of charges has the greatest attractive force when the charges are equal in magnitude?

The graph below shows how the temperature of a sample of water changes as energy is added to the sample.
During which interval does a gas form?
A clothes iron is designed to be used with a 220 V outlet. Which of the following will happen if the iron is plugged into a 110 V outlet instead of a 220 V outlet?

Which statement describes what most likely occurs when a magnetic compass is placed next to a simple circuit made from a battery, a light bulb, and a wire?

The diagram below shows a cell phone inside a glass jar that is sealed and connected to a vacuum pump. The vacuum pump is turned on and removes the air from inside the jar.
Which of the following statements explains what happens when someone calls the cell phone?

Which of the following quantities is described by both a magnitude and a direction?
An astronaut is making repairs on a satellite in space. The astronaut bumps against the satellite, causing a part to break off. Which statement describes the motion of the part after it breaks off the satellite?

When an uncharged balloon is rubbed against dry uncharged hair, electrons move from the hair onto the balloon’s surface. Which table lists the charges of the balloon and the  hair after they are moved apart?

The diagram below shows the top view of two carts with different masses on a frictionless surface. The carts are pushed from rest, and they reach the finish line at the same time.
Which of the following statements describes and explains the forces applied to the carts?

What is the momentum of a 4 kg bowling ball moving with a speed of 4 m/s?
A train driver blows the train’s horn as it moves away from a station. Which of the following statements describes how the sound of the horn heard by an  observer standing at the station platform differs from the sound heard by the train driver?

Which of the following is an example of gravitational potential energy being converted to kinetic energy?

What is the current flowing through a 60 W light bulb when it is connected to a 120 V source?
A windsurfer moves at 5 m/s while staying on the crest of a wave, as shown below.
What is the frequency of the waves if the distance between the two wave crests is 20 m?
A motor exerts a force of 2,500 N to lift an elevator 12 m in 11 s. What is the average power generated by the motor?
The diagram below shows a parallel circuit with a 4-Ω  resistor and a 12-Ω  resistor. The voltage between points X and Y is 16 V.  
What is the voltage across the 12-Ω resistor?
A racecar completes 200 laps in 190 min on a circular path. The distance of each lap is 4.0 km. What is the racecar’s average speed?
Sunlight warms an area of Earth’s surface. Winds then carry thermal energy from this area to another location. Which two heat transfer processes are primarily involved in this situation?

If the temperature of a gas in a closed container increases, which of the following also happens?

Open-Response Questions
  • 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.

The diagram below shows a simplified schematic for an adjustable electric heating blanket. The switch may be connected to point W, X, or Y depending on the desired level of warmth.
a. Calculate the current generated in the blanket when the switch is connected to point X. Show your calculations and include units in your answer. 

b. Calculate the power generated in the blanket when the switch is connected to point X. Show your calculations and include units in your answer. 

c. Explain why a fuse at point T would be more effective in this circuit than a fuse at point U. 

d. Identify which point the switch should be connected to in order to generate the most warmth. Explain your answer. 

Refer to the following information for the next three questions.

A student conducts an investigation to determine a ball’s mass, displacement, velocity, and kinetic energy.
a. Identify each of the following as either a vector quantity or a scalar quantity:
• mass
• displacement
• velocity
• kinetic energy

b. Describe how vector quantities are different from scalar quantities. 

The student measures the mass of the ball to be 0.25 kg. The ball is set in motion, and the student determines the magnitude of the ball’s maximum velocity to be 11 m/s.
c. Calculate the maximum kinetic energy of the ball. Show your calculations and include units in your answer.

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