3A60.20: Driven glider on air track (Driven Mass on Spring with Damping)

Video: Watch the new version

Description: This demonstration illustrates driven resonance of a mass on a spring with the option of damping.


  • Air track with pump
  • Mechanical motor
  • Springs
  • Glider
  • Masses
  • Sails (to add dampening)
  • Fixed end point (small glider on far left in the top image)

Setup Procedure:

  1. Attach pump to end of air track.
  2. Stand motor next to opposite end of track.
  3. Connect a spring to the motor on one end and the glider on the other.
  4. Attach the second spring to the end of the glider facing away from the motor and to the fixed point (far left object in top image).
  5. To add mass, place the ring shaped masses on the glider’s prong (see bottom image).
  6. To add dampening, screw in the square sail onto the top of the glider (see bottom image).

Demonstration Procedure:

  1. To find the resonance frequency, begin at a low speed on the motor.
  2. Increase until the distance the glider travels from it’s rest position is greatest. That is your resonance frequency.

Note: Make sure the point where the spring is attached to the motor is level with the point the spring attaches to the glider.