We take an accelerometer into an elevator!

Watch Video: 

Teachable Topics:
  • Acceleration
  • Falling
  • Constant Velocity


Designing an elevator ride has to trade off two competing goals: a fast ride and a comfortable ride.

In order to get you to your floor quickly, the elevator needs to accelerate to a fast velocity quickly.  But if it does it too quickly, it won't be a very nice ride.  Of course, once you are at the velocity you need to be travelling, you won't feel any forces upon your body.

To see what elevator designers do, take an accelerometer into an elevator and take measurements.  We used a lab accelerometer but you could do this with any smartphone.  


  • Stopwatch
  • Accelerometer (could be a smartphone)

Search 'em up!