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Cart A is moving with an initial velocity + v (in the positive direction) toward cart B, initially at rest. Both carts have equal mass and are on a frictionless surface. Which of the following statements correctly characterizes the velocity of the center of mass of the system before and after the collision?

  1. + v 2 before, v 2 after
  2. + v 2 before, 0 after
  3. + v 2 before, + v 2 after
  4. 0 before, 0 after

(c)

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Cart A is moving with a velocity of +10 m/s toward cart B, which is moving with a velocity of +4 m/s. Both carts have equal mass and are moving on a frictionless surface. The two carts have an inelastic collision and stick together after the collision. Calculate the velocity of the center of mass of the system before and after the collision. If there were friction present in this problem, how would this external force affect the center-of-mass velocity both before and after the collision?

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Section summary

  • The conservation of momentum principle is written
    p tot = constant size 12{p rSub { size 8{"tot"} } ="constant"} {}
    or
    p tot = p tot ( isolated system ) , size 12{p rSub { size 8{"tot"} } =p' rSub { size 8{"tot"} } ````` \( "isolated system" \) ,} {}
    p tot size 12{p rSub { size 8{"tot"} } } {} is the initial total momentum and p tot size 12{ ital "p'" rSub { size 8{"tot"} } } {} is the total momentum some time later.
  • An isolated system is defined to be one for which the net external force is zero F net = 0 . size 12{ left (F rSub { size 8{ ital "net"} } =0 right ) "." } {}
  • During projectile motion and where air resistance is negligible, momentum is conserved in the horizontal direction because horizontal forces are zero.
  • Conservation of momentum applies only when the net external force is zero.
  • The conservation of momentum principle is valid when considering systems of particles.

Conceptual questions

Professional Application

If you dive into water, you reach greater depths than if you do a belly flop. Explain this difference in depth using the concept of conservation of energy. Explain this difference in depth using what you have learned in this chapter.

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Under what circumstances is momentum conserved?

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Can momentum be conserved for a system if there are external forces acting on the system? If so, under what conditions? If not, why not?

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Momentum for a system can be conserved in one direction while not being conserved in another. What is the angle between the directions? Give an example.

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Professional Application

Explain in terms of momentum and Newton’s laws how a car’s air resistance is due in part to the fact that it pushes air in its direction of motion.

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Can objects in a system have momentum while the momentum of the system is zero? Explain your answer.

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Must the total energy of a system be conserved whenever its momentum is conserved? Explain why or why not.

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Problems&Exercises

Professional Application

Train cars are coupled together by being bumped into one another. Suppose two loaded train cars are moving toward one another, the first having a mass of 150,000 kg and a velocity of 0.300 m/s, and the second having a mass of 110,000 kg and a velocity of 0 . 120 m/s size 12{ - 0 "." "120"`"m/s"} {} . (The minus indicates direction of motion.) What is their final velocity?

0.122 m/s

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Suppose a clay model of a koala bear has a mass of 0.200 kg and slides on ice at a speed of 0.750 m/s. It runs into another clay model, which is initially motionless and has a mass of 0.350 kg. Both being soft clay, they naturally stick together. What is their final velocity?

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Professional Application

Consider the following question: A car moving at 10 m/s crashes into a tree and stops in 0.26 s. Calculate the force the seatbelt exerts on a passenger in the car to bring him to a halt. The mass of the passenger is 70 kg. Would the answer to this question be different if the car with the 70-kg passenger had collided with a car that has a mass equal to and is traveling in the opposite direction and at the same speed? Explain your answer.

In acollision withan identicalcar, momentumis conserved.Afterwards v f = 0 for bothcars. Thechange inmomentum willbe thesame asin thecrash withthe tree.However, theforce onthe bodyis notdetermined sincethe timeis notknown. Apadded stopwill reduceinjurious forceon body.

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What is the velocity of a 900-kg car initially moving at 30.0 m/s, just after it hits a 150-kg deer initially running at 12.0 m/s in the same direction? Assume the deer remains on the car.

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A 1.80-kg falcon catches a 0.650-kg dove from behind in midair. What is their velocity after impact if the falcon’s velocity is initially 28.0 m/s and the dove’s velocity is 7.00 m/s in the same direction?

22.4 m/s in the same direction as the original motion

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Questions & Answers

Suppose a speck of dust in an electrostatic precipitator has 1.0000×1012 protons in it and has a net charge of –5.00 nC (a very large charge for a small speck). How many electrons does it have?
Alexia Reply
how would I work this problem
Alexia
how can you have not an integer number of protons? If, on the other hand it supposed to be 1e12, then 1.6e-19C/proton • 1e12 protons=1.6e-7 C is the charge of the protons in the speck, so the difference between this and 5e-9C is made up by electrons
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Practice Key Terms 3

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Source:  OpenStax, College physics for ap® courses. OpenStax CNX. Nov 04, 2016 Download for free at https://legacy.cnx.org/content/col11844/1.14
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