Elastic Collision of two tennis balls

In summary, the conversation discusses the outcome of a one-dimensional elastic collision between a table-tennis ball and a stationary bowling ball. The question is whether the table-tennis ball has a larger or smaller magnitude of momentum and kinetic energy compared to the bowling ball after the collision. The answer is that the table-tennis ball has a smaller magnitude of momentum and more kinetic energy. The conversation also mentions taking the limit of a very heavy bowling ball to further understand this concept.
  • #1
Physicsnuubie
10
0
Hi, I came across this question which i couldn't figure out why the kinetic energy of the table-tennis ball is greater than the bowling ball after collision.

Qn:
A table-tennis ball is thrown at a stationary bowling ball. The table-tennis ball makes a one-dimensional elastic collision and bounces back along the same line. After the collision, compared to the bowling ball, the table-tennis ball has (a) a larger magnitude of momentum and more kinetic energy (b) a smaller magnitude of momentum and more kinetic energy (c) a larger magnitude of momentum and less kinetic energy (d) a smaller magnitude of momentum and less kinetic energy (e) the same magnitude of momentum and the same kinetic energy..

Answer is b.

I understand why momentum is smaller. So you can actually skip explaining that part to me. Thank you very much!
 
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  • #2
Take the limit of a bowling ball that is so heavy that it does *not* move at all when the tennis ball hits it. Does the tennis ball have more kinetic energy than the bowling ball?
 

Related to Elastic Collision of two tennis balls

What is an elastic collision?

An elastic collision is a type of collision in which the total kinetic energy of the system is conserved. This means that the total energy before and after the collision remains the same.

How does an elastic collision of two tennis balls differ from an inelastic collision?

In an elastic collision of two tennis balls, the total kinetic energy is conserved, meaning that the balls bounce off of each other with the same speed and energy. In an inelastic collision, some of the kinetic energy is lost, resulting in the balls sticking together or experiencing a change in speed.

What factors affect the elasticity of a collision between two tennis balls?

The elasticity of a collision between two tennis balls can be affected by a variety of factors, including the materials and surface of the balls, the speed and angle of the collision, and any external forces acting on the balls.

How is the coefficient of restitution related to the elasticity of a collision between two tennis balls?

The coefficient of restitution is a measure of the elasticity of a collision. It is the ratio of the relative speed of the two objects after the collision to the relative speed before the collision. In an elastic collision, the coefficient of restitution will be 1, meaning that the two objects bounce off of each other with the same speed and energy.

What are some real-world applications of understanding elastic collisions between tennis balls?

Understanding elastic collisions between tennis balls can be useful in sports science, engineering, and physics research. It can also be applied in industries that involve the use of bouncing objects, such as manufacturing of rubber or plastic materials. Additionally, understanding elastic collisions can help in designing safety equipment, like helmets and airbags, to reduce the impact of collisions.

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