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Does Newtons of an Egg drop vary accordingly to height?

  1. Jul 20, 2010 #1
    According to my knowledge, I am able to apply Newton's second law on an egg for an egg drop; the resulted force from that can would be the force which occurs when it hits the ground. That force would also be reflected when it hits the ground according to Newton's third law.

    What is confusing me is that the same force occurs to a 2m drop and a 2cm drop; one breaks and one doesn't yet the forces are still the same?

    I do not understand.
  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 20, 2010 #2
    When the egg is falling to the earth there is constant force acting on the egg and the earth F=mg=const. But as they close together they pick the same momentum each P=mv in different directions so the whole momentum of the system stays 0. So the speed of the egg is increasing. The movement of the earth is negligible.
    If you drop the egg form hight of 2 m it will have higher velocity than from 20 cm so bigger momentum and bigger kinetic energy.
    When the egg hits the earth the force with which the egg will act on the earth will depend on the change of the momentum or in other words on how fast the speed will decrease over time ( F=dP/dt=m dv/dt ).
    If the egg fall on something soft the time of change of the momentum will be bigger so the force will be smaller and maybe the egg wont break even from hight of 2 m.
  4. Jul 20, 2010 #3
  5. Jul 20, 2010 #4
    No problem, I hope I helped a bit :)
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