F091ALLab08

F091ALLab08 - Physics 1AL Introduction CONSERVATION OF...

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Physics 1AL CONSERVATION OF MOMENTUM Fall 2009 1 Introduction You have a summer job at Amtrak with a group examining the crash between two trains. Your supervisor wants you to calculate the results of two different cases. The first is a perfectly inelastic collision where the two trains stick to each other. The other case is an elastic collision where the two trains bounce of each other with no loss of kinetic energy. Since the trains may be carrying different cargo, their masses may be different. Your supervisor wants you to calculate the final velocity of the trains as a function of the masses and initial velocities of the trains. You decide to calculate the resulting velocities for the system and then build a laboratory model using gliders to check your calculation. Your Objective: To experimentally determine the final velocities of two objects after collision. ______________________________________________________________________________ Pre-lab questions: Answer each of the following questions in a few sentences of your own words: 1. Perfectly Inelastic Collision . Draw diagrams showing a situation where a bigger, moving train, v i , collides with a smaller train that is not moving. Assume that after the collision the trains stick together. Show separate diagrams for the situation just before the collision and just after the collision. Assume the trains have different masses ( m big and m small ). Make sure you identify your isolated system. Write down the momentum conservation equation for the scenario in question. Solve for the final velocity of the two trains, v f , in terms of v i , m big , and m small . 2. Elastic Collision . Draw two diagrams for the situation where a moving train (with initial speed v o ) collides elastically with a target train that is not initially moving, and the trains use their springy bumpers to bounce off each other without damage. One diagram should show the instant just before the collision and the other the instant just after the collision. Assume the trains have different masses ( m moving and m target ) Make sure you identify your isolated system . Show that the final velocity of each train will be: v tar get = 2 v o 1 + m tar get m moving " # $ $ % v moving = m moving " m tar get ( ) m moving + m tar get ( ) v o Hint: use conservation of momentum and the relation between the relative velocities before and after collision that arises due to conservation of energy. 3. Make all the data tables you’ll need for experiments B & C ahead of time in your lab notebook. B7 has an example of how your columns should look for experiment B. C9 tells you how many columns you should have for experiment C. Don’t turn the carbon copies of these tables in with your pre-lab – your TA will check to make sure you have the tables at the beginning of lab. 4.
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F091ALLab08 - Physics 1AL Introduction CONSERVATION OF...

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