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Boston University Physics: Connection between Circular and Simple Harmonic Motion Model Documents

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Main Document

Connection between Circular and Simple Harmonic Motion 

written by Andrew Duffy

This interactive simulation offers a way for students to explore the connection between uniform circular motion and simple harmonic motion.  The display shows two blocks on springs oscillating horizontally, and two balls traveling in uniform motion in a circular path.  The user sets initial values for the blocks: amplitude, mass, and spring constant. The two balls are automatically set to the same values. Students are able to see that the circular motion of each ball corresponds to the motion of the blocks, thus promoting understanding of the basic equation for objects undergoing simple harmonic motion.

To extend the learning, users can set values for the phase angles of each block. Also included by the author is a set of suggested activities to accompany the simulation.


The Connection between Circular and Simple Harmonic Motion model was created using the Easy Java Simulations (EJS) modeling tool.

Last Modified May 24, 2013

This file has previous versions.

Source Code Documents

Connection between Circular and Simple Harmonic Motion Source Code 

The source code zip archive contains an XML representation of the Connection between Circular and Simple Harmonic Motion model.   Unzip this archive in your EJS workspace to compile and run this model using EJS.

Published April 27, 2010
Last Modified May 2, 2010