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Block on a Spring

  1. Apr 21, 2009 #1
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data
    A block on a spring is pulled to the right and released at t=0s. It passes x=3.00cm at t=0.685s, and it passes x=-3.00cm at t=0.886s.
    a) What is the angular frequency?
    b) What is the amplitude?


    2. Relevant equations
    x(t)=Acos(wt+phi_0)


    3. The attempt at a solution
    Since the spring was initially pulled to the right, I assumed that the distance it was pulled would be the amplitude and with the initial conditions x0=Acos(phi_0)=A, I set phi_0=0. Plugging in the times and positions,
    x(t=0.685s)=Acos(0.685w)
    x(t=0.886s)=Acos(0.886w).
    I tried solving for an equation for A and plugging it into the other equation, but it just ended up looking like a complicated mess. Any insight would be appreciated =)
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 22, 2009 #2

    LowlyPion

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    Homework Helper

    There might be some insight to be gained by observing that the times given are for equal but opposite displacements about 0. Presumably the block and spring are at rest at x = 0.
     
  4. Apr 22, 2009 #3
    or you have

    two equations
    3.00=Acos(0.685w) and
    -3.00=Acos(0.886w).

    I would divide the equations, then A cancels, and you might have an easier time solving for w.
     
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