# Centripetal acceleration question confirmation please

• pinnacleprouk
In summary, centripetal acceleration is the acceleration towards the center of a circle that an object experiences when moving in a circular path. It can be calculated using the formula a = v^2/r and is affected by factors such as speed, radius, mass, and the force causing the circular motion. It is different from tangential acceleration, which is along the tangent to the circle, and is directly proportional to centripetal force.
pinnacleprouk

## Homework Statement

what is the magnitude and direction of the centripetal acceleration necessary to confine the motion of a 0.5kg mass moving at speed 0.1m/s to a circular path 0.2m in radius

a = v^2/r

## The Attempt at a Solution

0.1^2/0.2 = a

a = 0.05m/s/s towards the centre

Doesn't look right to me

Doesn't sound unreasonable

Your attempt at a solution is correct. The centripetal acceleration, a, can be calculated using the formula a = v^2/r, where v is the speed and r is the radius of the circular path. In this case, the mass is 0.5kg, the speed is 0.1m/s, and the radius is 0.2m. Plugging these values into the formula, we get a = (0.1m/s)^2 / 0.2m = 0.05m/s^2. This means that the magnitude of the centripetal acceleration needed to keep the mass moving in a circular path is 0.05m/s^2. The direction of the acceleration is towards the center of the circle, as you correctly stated. This means that the force causing the acceleration must also be directed towards the center of the circle.

## What is centripetal acceleration?

Centripetal acceleration is the acceleration that an object experiences when moving in a circular path. It is always directed towards the center of the circle and is caused by the centripetal force acting on the object.

## How is centripetal acceleration calculated?

Centripetal acceleration can be calculated using the formula a = v^2/r, where a is the centripetal acceleration, v is the velocity of the object, and r is the radius of the circle.

## What factors affect centripetal acceleration?

The magnitude of centripetal acceleration depends on the speed of the object, the radius of the circle, and the mass of the object. It also depends on the force that is causing the object to move in a circular path.

## What is the difference between centripetal acceleration and tangential acceleration?

Centripetal acceleration is the acceleration towards the center of the circle, while tangential acceleration is the acceleration along the tangent to the circle. They are both components of the total acceleration of an object moving in a circular path.

## How is centripetal acceleration related to centripetal force?

Centripetal acceleration and centripetal force are directly proportional to each other. The greater the centripetal force acting on an object, the greater the centripetal acceleration will be.

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