Kinematics Physics Question

• Tauskela
In summary, a caveman drops a rock into a hole and times its fall to be 16 seconds. Assuming no air friction and an initial velocity of 0m/s, the depth of the hole can be calculated using the equations h = ½g(T1)² and h = v(T2). By solving for the two unknown variables, it is determined that the hole is approximately 900 meters deep.

Homework Statement

A caveman drops a rock from ground-level, into a hole. He counts in seconds until he hears the rock hit the bottom of the hole, and finds that the hole is '16 seconds deep.' Assuming there is no air friction, and the initial velocity of the rock is 0m/s, how deep is the hole? Take into account the speed of sound.

h = ½g(T1)²
h = v(T2)
T1 + T2 = 16 sec

The Attempt at a Solution

Attempt 1:
h = ½g(T1)²
h=½(9.8m/s²)(16s)²
h=4.9m/s²(256s)
h=1254.4m
h=v(T2)
1254.4m=340.29m/s(T2)
1254.4m/340.29m/s=T2
T2=3.6862s
h=v(T2)
1254.4m=v(3.69s)
1254.4m/3.6862s=v
v=340.29m/s
T1+T2=16 sec
16s+3.6862s = 19.6862s?

I am confused because the two values do not add up...and than how do i know which variable actually represents the depth of the hole...

Last edited:
No. The times add to 16 by the statement of the problem.

h = ½g(T1)² = v(T2)

and

T1 + T2 = 16

Okay, so...
h = ½g(T1)² = v(T2)

Therefore...
h=½(9.8m/s²)(16s)²=v(T2)
h=4.9m/s²(256s)
h=1254.4m=340.29m/s(3.6862s)
h=1254.4m=1254.4m

But, I don't understand, because the answer can't be 1254.4m...

Tauskela said:
Okay, so...
h = ½g(T1)² = v(T2)

Therefore...
h=½(9.8m/s²)(16s)²=v(T2)
h=4.9m/s²(256s)
h=1254.4m=340.29m/s(3.6862s)
h=1254.4m=1254.4m

But, I don't understand, because the answer can't be 1254.4m...

You need to stop putting t1 = 16 into your equation.

The total time is 16.

You have 2 unknown time variables.

T1 + T 2 = 16

Solve the 2 equations for the 2 variables with that in mind.

Okay, so if I leave T1 as you've said...than that means I have two unknown variables...so how would that even work
h = ½g(T1)²

Tauskela said:
Okay, so if I leave T1 as you've said...than that means I have two unknown variables...so how would that even work
h = ½g(T1)²

Eliminate h first of all, it's the same in both directions isn't it?

½g(T1)² = v(T2)

and

T1 + T2 = 16

Solve.

Okay, so...I put what you said

½g(T1)² = v(T2)

and

T1 + T2 = 16

And than I sub in the values...

½(9.8m/s²)(T1)²=340.29m/s(T2)
4.9m/s²(T1)²=340.29m/s(T2)
4.9m/s²/340.29m/s=(T2)/(T1)²
0.014399s=(T2)/(T1)²
T1+T2=16

Than how would I proceed from here, am I supposed to combine the two equations in some way?

You haven't covered substituting variables in your coursework yet?

T1 = 16 - T2

½g(T1)² = v(T2)

½g(16 - T2)² = v(T2)

It could be a long semester.

Okay, It's not that I can't substitute, its just that there are two variables, so how am I supposed to solve, I'm really confused because if..

T1 = 16 - T2

...How do I even figure out what one of those variables are in the first place?

Should I assume that T2 = 3.6862s, because 1254.4m/340.29m/s=T2

So than, 16-3.6862 = 12.3138, so is this my answer?

The hole is 12.3138m deep?

But how can this even be, because if I'm not assuming that T1 is even 16s, that messes up my entire equation...

Last edited:
...How do I even figure out what one of those variables are in the first place?

½g(16 - T2)² = v(T2)

Everything is known but T2

½g(16 - T2)² = v(T2)
Okay, I get this far..
4.9m/s²(16-T2)² =340.29m/s

So, the quadratic equation means [-b+-sqrt(b²-4ac)]/2a...

Should I assume that 4.9m/s² = c, 340.29m/s = b, and 16 = a? How do I even work with that 16 because its in the bracket with the T2.

You will need to expand it of course.

Oh right. Expanding.

So (16-T2)²
=16²-T2²?

So is 16² going to be my 'a' value?

[-340.29m/s+-sqrt(340.29m/s²-4(16²)(4.9m/s²))]/2(16²)

Would that be my equation?

Tauskela said:
Oh right. Expanding.

So (16-T2)²
=16²-T2²?

So is 16² going to be my 'a' value?

No.

(16 -t)(16 - t) is not 16²-t²

(16 -t)(16 - t).

Okay, F.O.I.L rules, so..

96-16t-16t-t²
=96-t², because the other values cancel out?

Oh, wait. I THINK I figured it out, can you confirm?

t = d/343 + √(2d/g) = 16
solve for d

d + 343√(2d/(9.8)) = 5488
d + 155√d = 5488

let x² = d
x² + 155x – 5488 = 0
to solve ax² + by + c = 0
x = [–b ±√(b²–4ac)] / 2a
x = [–155 ±√(24025+21952)] / 2
x = [–155 ± 214] / 2
x = 30

√d for x
√d = 30
d = 900 meters

Tauskela said:
(16 -t)(16 - t).

Okay, F.O.I.L rules, so..

96-16t-16t-t²
=96-t², because the other values cancel out?

No.

256 - 32t + t²

That equals 343/4.9 * t = 70t = 256 - 32t + t

t² - 102t + 256 = 0

T2 = 2.58
x = 343 * 2.58

884 = 1/2*g*t² ===> T1 = 13.43

T1 + T2 = 2.58 + 13.43 ≈ 16

What is kinematics in physics?

Kinematics is the study of motion, without considering the forces that cause the motion. It involves describing the position, velocity, and acceleration of an object as it moves through space.

What are the three main equations of kinematics?

The three main equations of kinematics are:
1. Position equation: x = x0 + v0t + (1/2)at2
2. Velocity equation: v = v0 + at
3. Acceleration equation: v2 = v02 + 2a(x-x0)

What is the difference between speed and velocity?

Speed is the measure of how fast an object is moving, while velocity is the measure of how fast an object is moving in a specific direction. Velocity takes into account the object's speed and direction of motion.

What is acceleration in kinematics?

Acceleration is the rate of change of an object's velocity over time. It can be described as an object's change in velocity divided by the time it takes for that change to occur. It is measured in meters per second squared (m/s2).

How does displacement differ from distance?

Displacement is the shortest distance between an object's initial and final position, taking into account the object's direction of motion. Distance, on the other hand, is the total path length traveled by an object, and does not consider direction. Displacement is a vector quantity, while distance is a scalar quantity.

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