Millikan Oil Drop Lab Summary
We measured the charge for 7 droplets:
- Droplet 1: C
- Droplet 3: C
- Droplet 4: C
- Droplet 5: C
- Droplet 6: C
- Droplet 7: C
- Droplet 8: C
These charges can be compared to the elementary charge of a single electron (from wikipedia):
e = C
See the Analysis section of the lab notebook for the calculation of the charges of each droplet.
After looking over the manual and other student's experiments I have concluded that Ryan and I did the lab wrong. For more info see the lab notebook. This could be the reason for our unexpectedly large results, or I may have made a mistake in my charge calculation that I simnply cannot find.
Despite having made a large mistake somewhere causing our data to become virtually meaningless, this lab was a good learning experience. In the future I will make sure I've read the manual correctly before starting. My suggestions for improving this lab include getting a brighter lamp for the Millikan apparatus, and finding a way to hook a CCD up to the optics, so you don't have to hunch over watching droplets for extended periods of time.