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Hurling protons at one another to find where they stop

  1. Oct 1, 2009 #1
    Two protons that are very far apart are hurled straight at each other, each with an initial kinetic energy of 0.19 MeV, where 1 mega electron volt is equal to (1*10^6)*(1.6*10^-19) joules. What is the separation of the protons from each other when they momentarily come to a stop?
    separation = 1 m

    Maybe I'm just missing the necessary formula. Is there a way to incorporate Electric Potential Energy formula and the energy principle here?
     
    Last edited: Oct 1, 2009
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 1, 2009 #2
    Certainly. The protons will stop when all their kinetic energy is converted to electric potential energy.
    Both of the protons have kinetic energy at the start. The potential energy [tex] \frac {k q_1 q_2} {r} [/tex] is shared by both protons.
     
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