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Junior in High School Honors Physics Bumper Project

  1. Nov 7, 2008 #1
    Bumper Project: Need help with equations used.

    I was recently assigned this project for my honors physics class. I don't want any help with the design itself of the bumper I was just wondering if I could have help identifying different equations that would apply to this.

    1. Problem Statement
    Design Statement: Ford Motor Co. has hired you as a design engineer. Your employer realized that you have just graduated from the University of Illinois and decides to give you a top priority project. You are to design and build a durable prototype bumper that will absorb the maximum shock upon impact.

    Testing Conditions: The bumper will be placed on a car (woodblock). The impact block (13 lbs.) will be raised a set distance (not known yet) from the ground. It will be released to freely swing down to the bumper, which is attached to the car. The bumper that absorbs the most impact from the collision will be the winner.

    2. Relevant equations
    I honestly don't know any equation that relates to this from what I have learned so far in my class.

    I assume that it has to do with the velocity of a pendulum at a certain point to know what the velocity is when the block strikes the bumper. I don't really know if that is true or not but if so then I also would assume that this value would somehow help find the force that is being transferred into the bumper. Which would then help me find out some way of reducing this force as much as I possibly could. This project is more of an extra credit assignment and currently is way out of my understanding as it is also assigned to seniors but I wanted to see if with some help I could understand how the mechanics of this would work and make the best attempt I could at doing this using actual equations then just putting together something that I think would absorb force.

    3. The attempt at a solution
    None yet.
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2008
  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 8, 2008 #2
    Can you give a list of the topics you have covered so far in your class?
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