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Hooks Law

  1. Nov 8, 2009 #1
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data

    A massless hooksw law spring has a unstretched length of L, when a mass m is ploaced on it, and slowly lowered until the mass is at rest, the spring is queezed to a length of x. the mass is then dropped on the spring from a height of h, use energ methods

    what is the length of the spring at maximum compression as a result of the mass dropping on it

    2. Relevant equations

    3. The attempt at a solution

    mgh = -mgs + .5ks2

    s = -mg + or -(((mg)2 - 4(.5k)(mgh))/k).5

    if this is correct

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    Last edited: Nov 8, 2009
  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 8, 2009 #2
    The question is worded aquardly, but I think you're on the right path with your firse equation. Now you need to write the spring constant k in terms of other parameters you have in your problem.

    Also, you get two anilytical solutions. Can you think which sollution is correct? What does your non-physical solution correspond do?
  4. Nov 8, 2009 #3
    what would be the benefit from solving for the spring constant

    it asks for the length of the spring at compression s
  5. Nov 8, 2009 #4


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    That way the spring constant is expressed in terms of other known parameters.
  6. Nov 8, 2009 #5
    k = (2mgs - 2mgh)s2 = 2mg(s-h)/s2

    i still dont understand how that helps, what would i use it for now
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