# Smaller Beta

## Homework Statement

Does a baseball on a slinky have a smaller Beta, or balloon on a slinky? Explain.

## Homework Equations

Beta = b/sqrt(mk)

b: damping coefficient
m: mass
k: spring constant

## The Attempt at a Solution

I see that the spring constant k is the same for either the baseball or the balloon case, because the slinky acts like a spring, so k is the spring constant.

The damping coefficient is different for the 2 cases so is the mass.

Since the mass of the baseball is heavier, it is assumed that the baseball case has a smaller beta. But what about the damping coefficient, b? How will this affect the system? In which case is b larger? I am stuck here on how to relate b, and mass together to get the answer. Thanks for the help.

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Dick
Homework Helper
This may be more of an opinion question than anything else. What causes damping?

damping is any effect that tends to reduce the amplitude of oscillations in an oscillatory system

this is also the point that i am confused about, does the mass on the slinky has anything to do with this damping coefficient?

Dick