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In class we were given the following task:

Analyse the motion of an object rolling down a ramp to determine the coefficient of friction. Use the information obtained and projectile motion analyses to determine the distance a projectile will travel when launched off the end of a ramp.

I know that you can use vector diagrams when a trolley is moving at constant velocity. Then friction would be mg sin Ø But in this case the trolley would be accelerating down the ramp?

If I have a ramp that leads to the floor, I could time the motion from when it leaves the ramp until it stops. Then I can also measure the distance it has travelled. The horizontal acceleration would be 0 m/s^2 and the only thing, considering that air resistance is insignificant, that is stopping the trolley is the opposing friction. I do not know how to proceed from here.

The teacher also mentioned that it would be useful to also take kinetic and potential energy into consideration. On top of the ramp the trolley will have potential energy, mgh, and as it moves down the ramp, the potential energy is converted into kinetic energy. 0.5 mv^2. But how does that help?!

How would I set this up correctly?

And could someone please explain the concept of the coefficient of friction to me?

Thank you in advance

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# Homework Help: Coefficient of friction

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