Story of Science - Buoyancy ((Archimedes' Principle))
It was a normal Tuesday Afternoon for Danny, with all his homework finished, he asked his mother;
“Mom! May I watch TV? I finished all my homework.
“Sure Daniel! But only 1 hour!”
Danny rushed to the Living Room, and turned on the TV, anxious to know what was happening in the News. He turned on BBC.
“South Korean Ferry boats sinks, and with more than 180 people remain missing and 100 found dead.”
Danny sits in shock, thinking about how many people lost their lives.
“Most of the people in the boat were High School students, on a field trip to a small island South from South Korea.”
Danny was astonished, and now felt even more pity for the poor High Schoolers, which had a whole life ahead of them.
Suddenly, Danny wondered: What made the boat sink? He ran to his mother with the question at the tip of his tongue.
“Mom, I have a really important question…”
“What is it Daniel?”
“Um… I was wondering… What makes a boat float and sink?”
“I don’t know actually, why don’t you check the internet for some good information?”
I rushed to the computer, anxious to know the answer to his question. Still wondering, he thought about his hypothesis, coming to a conclusion that it might float because of the shape, with the deck and the bow.
How do boats float?
“Boats float because of a theory created by Archimedes, called the Archimedes’ Principle. When the ship is in the ocean, constant Gravity is pushing the boat downwards, just as a pebble would sink if you threw it in the water, but the water the ship is in has a constant upward force, called the Buoyant Force. Archimedes Principle is that, which means that the Buoyant Force is equal to the Weight of the Displaced Liquid. A ship will float as long as it weighs less than the amount of water the hole can displace.”
After reading the information, Danny now knew how ship floated and how Archimedes’ Principle is important. But why did ships sink?
He used Archimedes’ Principle to his hypothesis, noticing that if the Weight of the Displaced Liquid was more than the Buoyant Force, the would sink. Maybe this would happen by a leak in the boat, bringing all the water in, making the weight of the displaced liquid more than the Buoyant Force.
He then came to a conclusion that the South Korean ship might have sunk because of this problem, since if might have hit something, making it sink.
He now knew the answer to his question, now satisfied.