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Rocket Problem

  1. Oct 23, 2005 #1
    Consider a rocket (initial mass m)o) accelerating from rest in free space. At first, as it speeds up its momentum p increases, but as its mass m decreases p eventually begins to decrease. For what value of m is p maximum?

    So I started out with the rocket equation

    which is

    m*v' = m'*v_ex + F_ext


    v_ex - exhaust speed
    F_ex = external force

    since it is accelerating the external force is -mg.

    I know that the momentum P(t) = mv.

    So in order to show for what value of m is P maximum, then do I simply solve for v(t) and let t go to infinity?
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 24, 2005 #2
    didnt you say it was in free space

    then where did gravity come into play
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