Specific Question : What is the effect of the different type of materials in a parachute on the time to drop from a second story window.


It is Hypothesised that the cotton parachute would reach the ground in the longest time.


Independent Variable: the type of material.
Dependent Variable: Time in seconds from window to ground.

General Plan

The experiment was to test different materials for a parachute. A doll was used to weigh down the parachute.There were three different materials used for parachutes. The three materials that were used were cotton, plastic, and silk to make circles each having a 14” diameter. The parachutes were launched from the second floor window of the experimenter's classroom. There were 10 trials for each material. A timer was used to time each drop. One potential problem was wind and the affect it had on the time.

Experimental Design

This Experiment was Designed to see what is the effect on the different fabrics. The fabrics was used for conducting the parachute. The kind of fabrics that were used were Cotton, Plastic and Satin.

Budget Table

* Cotton (from walmart ) $ 4.96
* Plastic bag (from school trash bag supply (free)
* Satin (from Walmart fabric section) $ 4.96
* small doll (Polly Pocket, how tall is she) from old toy chest at house
* string (sewing, blue) at home
* scissors (measure these) at home
* stop watch timer (from Mr. Yannah
* classroom with a window on second floor
* a person to help timing (this should always be the same person)
* paper and pencil to record data
* rubber bands (Walmart $1.00

Time Line

have draft done by 2/29/12
Finish plan 3/2,/12
practice experiment trials 3/8/12
start experiment trial 3,/16/12
end Experiment trial 3/21/12
Data observations start 3/16/12
Data observation end 3/21/12
Results and conclusions 3 /19/12
Results and Conclusion end 3/19/12
Wiki Page start 4//10/12
Wiki Page end 4/17/12
start Display board 4/2312
End Display board 4/27/12
JBES Science fair 5/1/12 to 5/3/12
M W V Science fair 5/10/12

Background Research

The research that the experimenter looked up was to see how to make a parachute.

Click on the link below to see the Research

Detailed Procedure

  1. Gather all your materials.
  2. Check the parachute to see if there is any loose knots.
  3. Attach the doll to Cotton parachute.
  4. Have the timer person go outside under the window with timer.
  5. Open the window all the way.
  6. Get ready to drop and get ready to time.
  7. The dropper will hold the parachute and doll out of the window.
  8. The timer will say “five, four, three, two, one, drop”.
  9. The dropper will drop the parachute from second story window as the timer says “drop”.
  10. The timer will time the drop in seconds, stopping when the doll hits the ground.
  11. Write down the time of the drop in the data table.
  12. Repeat the process 10 times with each different parachute material (30 drops total).


Photo List

+ picture of the school window
+ The timer person
+ The person That drop's
+ Satin parachute
+Cotton parachute
+ Plastic parachute
+ Small doll
+ making the parachute
+ the parachutes dropping (one picture of each)



The experiment was conducted to determine which parachute fabric reached the ground in the longest amount of time. Cotton fabric reached the ground slower than any others. Satin fabric took the least time to reach the ground.

Data Table


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Data Analysis


The experiment was conducted to determine which fabric made the best parachute. The fabrics that were used in the experiment were Satin, Cotton, and Plastic. The Satin Parachute was the fastest.. The Cotton made the best parachute because it was the slowest. . The Cotton Parachute had a time of 19.6seconds Total.


The experiment was conducted to see which materials such as satin, cotton, and plastic when dropped from a second story window would reach the ground in the greatest time? The cotton parachute reached the ground with the greatest time with a mean time of 1.959, followed by the plastic one with a mean time of 1.911 and the last was satin with a mean time of 1.552. The Data of the experiment showed a pattern when the drop went down on some of the parachute. The cotton parachute was the parachute that took the the longest to go down. When the experiment drop was conducted it all depended on how the wind speed was. Some of the drops were going fast and some were going slow because the fast drop was because the wind . There were a couple of problems with the design of the science experiment. In the beginning sewing string was going to be used for the parachute but after using it a couple times the string split. The string was then changed to a stronger material.that could have affected the results. There were a couple of challenges that could have affected the results. The first one was the dropper changed in the middle of the experiment. There were two droppers used instead of one. The second challenge was that the wind was not considered when designing this experiment. There were several things that could have been done better in this experiment. First, the experiment should have been done on the same day by the same dropper. Second, the experiment could have been done inside where there is no wind. This information can be helpful to people that want to build their own parachutes. Young students can use this information to do their own science projects.


This Experiment was see what parachute will get down the longest. This experiment had 3 different kinds Of materiel were cotton, plastic and Silk