inelastic collision Definition and Topics - 35 Discussions

An inelastic collision, in contrast to an elastic collision, is a collision in which kinetic energy is not conserved due to the action of internal friction.
In collisions of macroscopic bodies, some kinetic energy is turned into vibrational energy of the atoms, causing a heating effect, and the bodies are deformed.
The molecules of a gas or liquid rarely experience perfectly elastic collisions because kinetic energy is exchanged between the molecules' translational motion and their internal degrees of freedom with each collision. At any one instant, half the collisions are – to a varying extent – inelastic (the pair possesses less kinetic energy after the collision than before), and half could be described as “super-elastic” (possessing more kinetic energy after the collision than before). Averaged across an entire sample, molecular collisions are elastic.Although inelastic collisions do not conserve kinetic energy, they do obey conservation of momentum. Simple ballistic pendulum problems obey the conservation of kinetic energy only when the block swings to its largest angle.
In nuclear physics, an inelastic collision is one in which the incoming particle causes the nucleus it strikes to become excited or to break up. Deep inelastic scattering is a method of probing the structure of subatomic particles in much the same way as Rutherford probed the inside of the atom (see Rutherford scattering). Such experiments were performed on protons in the late 1960s using high-energy electrons at the Stanford Linear Accelerator (SLAC). As in Rutherford scattering, deep inelastic scattering of electrons by proton targets revealed that most of the incident electrons interact very little and pass straight through, with only a small number bouncing back. This indicates that the charge in the proton is concentrated in small lumps, reminiscent of Rutherford's discovery that the positive charge in an atom is concentrated at the nucleus. However, in the case of the proton, the evidence suggested three distinct concentrations of charge (quarks) and not one.

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  1. R

    I Relationship between Pileup and inelastic collision events

    I've read some stuff on pileup.In one paper, it says the number of inelastic event approximately equals pileup event in detector.I don't quitely understand it.Can someone explain?Thanks
  2. S

    Determining position of an object after inelastic collision

    Homework Statement A 39,000 lb truck A and a 3968 lb sports car B collide at an intersection. At the moment of the collision, the truck and the sports car are traveling with speeds vA = 70 mph and vB = 30 mph. Assume that the entire intersection forms a horizontal surface. Letting the line of...
  3. neilparker62

    Collisions Toolkit

    Just thought I'd post a couple of formulas which I have found useful when assisting (or should I say attempting to assist!) with collisions problems in the "Homework" forums. These formulas work on the basic premise that a collision is essentially a "Newton 3 event" in which equal and opposite...
  4. V

    Inelastic collision with an inclined plane

    Homework Statement A particle is thrown upward with speed 10√3 m/sec. It strikes an inclined surface. Collision between the particle and inclined plane is perfectly inelastic. What will be the maximum height attained by the particle from the ground. 2. Relevant information and equations In...
  5. J

    Inelastic 2D Collision with Vector Components

    Homework Statement Two balls with mass m and 4m collide at the location x=y=0 and stick. Their initial velocities just before the collision can be represented as v1=(i+j) v and v2=(j-i)v' respectively. Their final velocity vf makes an angle θ with the +x axis. Find v and v' in terms of vf and...
  6. R

    Elastic and inelstic collisions conceptual questions.

    Homework Statement The questions showed in the pictures ask me whether the collisions in the drawings could be elastic or inelastic, I am not given any mass, the angles are a little vague but I think B and C are supposed to be π/2 and π respectively. For velocity, I am just given the direction...
  7. Cutetys

    Zero momentum reference frame and an inelastic collision

    Homework Statement In my reference frame, I see two carts collide. Both cart A and Cart B have a mass of 2 kg. Cart A has initial velocity v= 3 m/s i-hat + 2 m/s j-hat, cart B has initial velocity v= 3 m/s I-hat + 4 m/s j-hat. 12 J are released in the collision. In previous parts of this...
  8. Anonymous123451234

    Inelastic collision, determine ratio KEf/KEi

    Consider the following extreme cases for a completely inelastic collision. In each case, determine the approximate ratio KEf/KEi. a) A moving train collides with a stationary car. b) A moving car collides with a stationary train. I do not understand this question, I'm not given masses or...
  9. C

    Conservation of Linear Momentum and Covariance

    Homework Statement Assume two masses m1' and m2' are moving in the positive x-direction with velocities v1' and v2' as measured by an observer in S' before a collision. After the collision, the two masses stick together and move with velocity v' in S'. Show that if an observer in S' finds...
  10. neilparker62

    Transfer of Momentum during a collision

    For an inelastic impact situation where two bodies travelling in opposite directions (vehicles say) collide and coalesce (perfectly inelastic collision) , one can derive the following expression for equal and opposite transfer of momentum. On the basis that if impact forces are equal and...
  11. Starkrod

    Sphere sliding up a step - Inelastic Collision

    Homework Statement A sphere of radius R is rolling without slipping with a velocity v and collides inelastically with a step of height h < R. ¿What is the minimum velocity for which the sphere will be over the step? Homework Equations Total kinetic energy (maybe)...
  12. S

    Collision with magnets -- Elastic or Inelastic?

    In my experiment I am performing a collision with two carts with magnets attached with photogates and a labquest on an air track. I pushed the carts together and made sure that the carts did not come into contact. Based on my knowledge of collisions, I believed that the collision would have been...
  13. Lianne Evans

    Conservation of Angular Momentum with SHM

    Homework Statement A 39.00 kg rod of length 2.8 m is hanging vertically by one of its ends that is free to swing in a complete circle about a frictionless axle/pivot. The rod has uniform mass density. Suddenly it is struck horizontally by a 5 kg putty that sticks to the center of...
  14. P

    Inelastic Collisions in space

    Let's say that 2 objects inelastically collided in outer space. One has a Mass of 2kg, and velocity 5m/s. The other has a Mass of 4kg, and velocity is 0m/s. ( at rest) 1) Energy cannot be created or destroyed. (Energy is conserved) 2) Momentum is conserved. Total Momentum before was (2x5) +...
  15. TheChemist_

    Elastic/Inelastic collision upon Traincrash

    Homework Statement A railway waggon of mass m=20t is travelling with v=18km/h. It then hits 10 other stationary railway waggons, with each one having the same mass of m=20t . (Friction is not being considered) Homework Equations a) Assume the 10 railway waggons are connected through strong...
  16. Q

    Maximum height after a collision (general solution)

    Here's the situation: A small block of wood of inertia mb is released from rest a distance h above the ground, directly above your head. You decide to shoot it with your pellet gun, which fires a pellet of inertia mp. After the block has fallen a distance d, the pellet hits it and becomes...
  17. X

    Inelastic Collision

    In an inelastic collision is the change in kinetic energy equal to the difference of final and initial momentum if one of the objects is initially at rest? For example: m1v = (m1+m2)Vf -----> 0 = (m1+m2)Vf - m1v1 1/2(m1+m2)Vf^2 - 1/2m1v^2 = (m1+m2)Vf - m1v1 Or totally wrong? Thanks!
  18. UMath1

    Momentum conservation inelastic collection

    If a car crashes with a stationary tree and comes to stop, we could say that the kinetic energy of the car was converted to heat and that the collision was inelastic. However, conservation of momentum dictates that momentum is still conserved. How would that be possible given that neither the...
  19. marsupial

    Calculate the impulse exerted after an inelastic collision

    Homework Statement A block A of mass m travelling with speed v collides head-on with a stationary body B of mass 2m. The two bodies stick together. Calculate the impulse exerted by body B on body A during the collision. Homework Equations ## J = p_{final} - p_{initial} ## ## p_{initial} =...
  20. JayaSuria

    Inelastic Collision - Kinetic Energy

    A 6.0kg metal ball moving at 4.0m/s hits a 6.0kg clay ball at rest and sticks to it. The two move at 2.0m/s. a. calculate the kinetic energy of the metal ball before it hits the clay ball. b. calculate the kinetic energy of the metal ball after it hits the clay ball. c. calculate the kinetic...
  21. Freemann

    How to calculate/get info about inelastic scattered neutron?

    I have been researching in the Forum, but I did not see anything conclusive about this: sorry if that was posted anywhere else here, I am new here :smile:. The energy loss of a neutron after an elastic scattering is a pretty straightforward calculation that can be done by hand. However, I am...
  22. X

    Inelastic Collision

    Homework Statement A student runs an experiment with two carts on a low-friction track. As measured in the Earth reference frame, cart 1 (m = 0.48 kg ) moves from left to right at 1.0 m/s as the student walks along next to it at the same velocity. Let the +x direction be to the right. A. What...
  23. M

    Elastic and inelastic collisions

    Homework Statement A low-energy particle collides elastically with a stationary particle of the same mass. The angle between the subsequent paths of both particles are 90 degrees. But when a high-energy proton collides with a stationary proton, the angle between the two paths is not 90 degrees...
  24. J

    Physics displacement velocity mass elastic/inelastic help!

    NO TEMPLATE BECAUSE THREAD WAS STARTED IN WRONG FORUM A wrecking ball is a heavy steel ball, usually hung from a crane that is used for demolishing large buildings. Suppose we had a crane with a wrecking ball with a mass of m1 = 12,000 lbs. The crane produces a displacement on the ball of a...
  25. M

    Elastic and inelastic collisions

    Homework Statement In a closed system, in an inelastic collision, momentum and total energy is conserved, but total kinetic energy is not. But how is this possible? If we have a change in total kinetic energy, we have a change in velocity, and so we must have a change in momentum as...
  26. Lizette Delbosque

    Collision Investigation (2-D)

    Homework Statement I apologize in advance because this is a long question. This is a scenario based question where I role play as an intern for the Montreal Police Collision Investigation Unit. Basically I have to determine the initial velocity of vehicles to determine whether or not they are...
  27. Negus

    Speeds regarding 2D inelastic collision

    Homework Statement You are called to the site of a collision between a small car and a half ton truck on a lonely country road. You are given the following information: a) On clean dry pavement at a temperature of 20 C, the coefficient of kinetic friction is 0.600 on locked wheels. b)...
  28. A

    Kinetic energy of 2 cart system

    Homework Statement On cart with a mass of 371 kg and another cart with a mass of 495 kg are rolling toward each other. Just before they collide, the 495 kg cart has a speed of 2.09 m/s, and the 371 kg cart has a speed of 1.90 m/s. We will consider the friction between the cart wheels and track...
  29. Samei

    Dropping ball into spring (inelastic collision)

    Homework Statement : [/B]I asked a question on this topic before, but I want to make sure I know the material well. So, I looked up another question similar to it (and a little more complex) to check my understanding. Here is the practice problem: A board with mass M, when placed into a coil...
  30. K

    Piston/bullet inelastic collision (not like other problems)

    Homework Statement a bullet has mass=0.01kg velocity=150m/s, you have a cylinder with 5.0m^3 of air at STP with a piston at one end that has mass=0.1kg and surface area of 10cm^3 and is at rest. The bullet strikes and embeds itself into the piston. The system is to be considered adiabatic after...