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Spring mass system

  1. Jan 15, 2014 #1
    I always see those spring mass type questions on AP M.C. questions. Ones with a horizontal spring connected to a mass.
    I understand that at the maximum amplitude, the velocity is zero since it is changing direction, and the displacement is maximum. However, what is the acceleration like? I can't seem to visualize it. Please help.

  2. jcsd
  3. Jan 15, 2014 #2
    Velocity is the first derivative of displacement and acceleration is the first derivative of velocity. If the displacement varies as a sin function, it's easy to calc velocity and acceleration. At max displacement, the magnitude of the acceleration is maximum and the velocity is zero.
  4. Jan 15, 2014 #3
    At any displacement, the spring force is equal to the spring constant k times the displacement x. So the acceleration must be equal to -kx/m at all displacements.
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