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Spring force on car

  1. May 18, 2012 #1
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data

    To test the resiliency of its bumper during low-speed collisions, a 4 600-kg automobile is driven into a brick wall. The car's bumper behaves like a spring with a force constant 8.00 106 N/m and compresses 3.36 cm as the car is brought to rest. What was the speed of the car before impact, assuming no mechanical energy is transformed or transferred away during impact with the wall?


    2. Relevant equations



    3. The attempt at a solution

    K.e=1/2mv2

    p.e(spring)=U=1/2kx2

    K=U

    1/2mv2=1/2kx2

    mv2=kx2

    v=√(kx2)/m

    = √(((0.0336)(1.12896*10-3))/4600)

    v= 1.4 m/s is this correct it seemed a little slow for a car?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. May 18, 2012 #2

    PhanthomJay

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    Looks good! Don't forget that if the car was going fast, the bumper would compress more than a mere 3 cm. Good thing it was going slow!
     
  4. May 18, 2012 #3
    Thanks Phantom Jay.
     
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