Collisions-1D - PHY 122 LAB Collisions in one dimension...

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PHY122 Labs ( © P. Bennett, JCHS) -1- 10/04/06 PHY 122 LAB : Collisions in one dimension Introduction In this lab we look at collisions of carts constrained to move in 1D on a low- friction track. We’ll compare before/after velocities with theory expected using the appropriate models for conservation of energy and/or momentum. (Both apply for an elastic collision (where they collide against rubber bumpers). For an inelastic collision (where they collide against velcro bumpers) some of the energy goes into the stickyness of the velcro. Then only momentum conservation applies. In order to use energy conservation you would have to measure the energy dissipated when the velcro sticks, which is very difficult). Theory Consider an elastic(!!) collision between two particles moving in 1D. We have particles m 1 and m 2 moving with velocities u1 and u2 before the collision and v1 , v2 after the collision. We know that kinetic energy (KE) and linear momentum (P) are conserved, as P = (P f – P i ) = 0 Eq. 1 KE = (KE f – KE i ) = 0 Eq. 2 It is also useful to formulate these fundamental relations in terms of velocities (see your phy121 textbook). Thus we have (for elastic collisions) (v2 – v1 )/(u2 –u1 ) = -1 Eq. 3
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