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Homework Help: Basic Maxwell Speed Distribution Function

  1. Apr 18, 2014 #1
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data

    2. Relevant equations

    3. The attempt at a solution
    I DO NOT NEED HELP WRITING THE PROGRAM! I'm just trying to figure out the basics behind it. Since this is an integral I will be solving this problem by using riemann sums. Where I'm having the most trouble is in the actually computation.

    These are my constants:

    For example I can look at the first case, v=0 and realize that I will get a result of 0.

    Now when a substitute in v=20 and try to solve, my calculator gets an error that says INF.

    Does anyone know what I'm doing wrong here.
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 18, 2014 #2


    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper

    First, I found a typo. The problem states N = 10000 (N = 10^4). Your post indicates N = 100000 (10^5).

    Second, always indicate the units for the various variables and constants you are using. It saves a lot of time and confusion.
  4. Apr 18, 2014 #3
    What SteamKing said. You're clearly using the wrong units for the mass. ALWAYS write down the units. they are not optional.
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