Two satellites in space collide inelastically. What happens to the kinetic energy and momentum?
a. both are conserved
b. KE conserved but momentum reduced
c. KE reduced but momentum conserved
d. both are reduced
e. KE reduced but momentum increased
elastic and inelastic collision
The Attempt at a Solution
KE is reduced because the collision is inelastic (there is some KE transforms into other energy during collision).
Momentum is only conserved for closed system (no external force acting on object). In this case momentum is conserved because all the gravitational forces acting on each satellite are considered internal forces?
How to differentiate between internal and external force? Thanks