Momentum/velocity/position graphs

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In summary, the conversation discusses an experiment with two identical gliders on an air track, where one is given a push towards the other and they stick together upon collision. The graphs provided show various variables as a function of time, and the task is to match each variable with the appropriate graph. The position of glider 1 is represented by graph E, as it is on a frictionless surface. The momentum of both gliders is discussed, with the concept of conservation of momentum being mentioned. Two graphs show negative values with equal magnitudes, indicating the application of a physical law.
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hhq5000
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Homework Statement


Two identical gliders are floating at rest on an air track. Glider 1 is given a quick push in the positive x-direction towards glider 2. When they hit, they stick together. The graphs below describe some of the variables associated with the motion as a function of time . The graphs begin recording data just after the push of glider 1 is completed.

Given the experiment as described above: for each of the items below, identify which graph, if assigned the appropriate scale, could properly describe the given variable as a function of time. Each graph may be used once, more than once, or not at all. If none of the graphs shown describe the quantity in question, record (J) as your response.


1.) The net force on glider 1
2.) The momentum of glider 2
3.) The position of glider 1
4.) The net force on glider 2
5.) The velocity of glider 1
6.) The total momentum of the system (consisting of both gliders)



Homework Equations





The Attempt at a Solution



For number 3, i thought the position of glider 1 would be graph E, since the glider is on a frictionless surface

for the other 5 questions, i really can't visualize it. I am just not any good with graphs
 

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  • #2
Yeah, you are right about the position, but I don't follow your comment about the surface being frictionless relating.

You should focus on the easiest parts first, which to me would be momentum. What is the momentum of the first car? How about the second? Since momentum is always conserved, what is the system momentum - does it relate to the first car, the second car, or both?

Two of the graphs looks like they have equal magnitudes, but are negative, what physical law would that describe?
 
  • #3
I would like to provide a comprehensive response to this content. First, let's start by defining momentum, velocity, and position. Momentum is the product of an object's mass and its velocity, and it is a measure of how much motion an object has. Velocity is the rate of change of an object's position with respect to time. Position is the location of an object in space.

Now, let's take a closer look at the experiment described. Two identical gliders are initially at rest on an air track. Glider 1 is given a quick push in the positive x-direction, towards glider 2. When they collide, they stick together. The graphs provided describe the variables associated with the motion of the gliders as a function of time.

1. The net force on glider 1 - This would be represented by graph D. The net force on glider 1 is initially zero, as it is at rest. However, as it is given a push, the force increases and then drops to zero again after the collision with glider 2.

2. The momentum of glider 2 - This would be represented by graph F. The momentum of glider 2 is initially zero, as it is at rest. However, after the collision, the momentum increases as it now has the combined momentum of both gliders.

3. The position of glider 1 - This would be represented by graph E. The position of glider 1 remains constant at zero until it is given a push, after which it increases linearly until the collision with glider 2.

4. The net force on glider 2 - This would be represented by graph D. The net force on glider 2 is initially zero, as it is at rest. However, after the collision, the force increases and then drops to zero again.

5. The velocity of glider 1 - This would be represented by graph C. The velocity of glider 1 is initially zero, as it is at rest. However, after the push, the velocity increases and then drops to zero again after the collision with glider 2.

6. The total momentum of the system (consisting of both gliders) - This would be represented by graph F. The total momentum of the system is initially zero, as both gliders are at rest. However, after the collision, the total momentum increases and remains constant.

It
 

1. What is the difference between momentum and velocity?

Momentum is a measure of an object's motion based on its mass and velocity, while velocity is the speed and direction of an object's motion. Momentum takes into account an object's mass, while velocity does not.

2. How are position graphs related to momentum and velocity?

A position graph shows an object's displacement over time, and can be used to calculate an object's velocity. Velocity can then be used to calculate an object's momentum. Therefore, position graphs are directly related to both momentum and velocity.

3. How do you calculate momentum from a velocity graph?

Momentum can be calculated by multiplying an object's mass by its velocity. From a velocity graph, the slope of the line at a specific point can be used to determine the object's velocity, which can then be used to calculate its momentum.

4. Can momentum be negative?

Yes, momentum can be negative. This occurs when an object is moving in the opposite direction of its positive direction, or when its velocity decreases over time.

5. How do changes in position affect momentum?

Changes in position do not directly affect an object's momentum. However, changes in velocity, which can be caused by changes in position, will affect an object's momentum. For example, if an object's position remains constant but its velocity increases, its momentum will also increase.

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