The
story of scientist in a bath tub
Once upon a time, the King of Syracuse, ordered a
goldsmith to make a golden
crown.The King gave a piece of pure gold to the
goldsmith for this purpose. In
a short time the crown was ready. But when it was presented to the King he
became suspicious. Was the crown made of pure gold? He summoned Archimedes,
a mathematician, and asked him to solve the problem. Archimedes was in deep thought.
Both the crown and the piece of pure gold weighed equal. Then how to ascertain the purity
of the crown without breaking it? One day as Archimedes entered the bathtub,
water spilled out of it. All of a sudden he got an idea and he shouted
happily ‘Eureka…I have found it’. Now
lets understand, how Archimedes solved the problem. He noticed that the amount of water spilled out of the
bathtub was equal to the volume of his body. Thus, he concluded, that any
object when put in water would displace an amount of water equivalent to its
mass. Then he calculated the volume of the crown by marking the rise in water
level, when it was put in a container filled with water. Next he took a
piece of pure gold weighing same as the crown and put it in water. This time
the rise in water level was lesser. Hence it was proved that the crown was
not made of pure gold. In fact, Archimedes had unknowingly calculated the
density of the two objects. Let me explain it to you. Archimedes reasoned
that any object when put in water would displace a volume of water in
relation to its mass. Today, we know that mass per volume gives the density
of an object. If any object has silver mixed with gold then its density will
be more than a piece of pure gold. Addition of silver had increased the
density of the crown, and thus, it displaced more water than a piece of pure
gold.
Web
references :
Archemedies
Archimedes
and the Golden Crown
Principals
Of Buoyancy

