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I Conservation of momentum query

  1. Jan 11, 2017 #1
    I have a ball and the wind blows on it. Could I find the initial velocity of the ball from conservation of momentum?

    m_air * v_air = m_ball * v_ball

    v_ball = (m_air * v_air) / m_ball

    What would you put for m_air?
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2017
  2. jcsd
  3. Jan 11, 2017 #2


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    2017 Award

    Staff: Mentor

    The initial speed?
    That can be anything, you cannot calculate it unless you know something about your system.

    The final speed? You can find the speed where the ball is in a force equilibrium. The ball will approach this speed over time.
    No. The air won't all move at the same speed, and you cannot properly keep track of its total momentum.
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