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Weird Horse physics problem -help

  1. Apr 12, 2008 #1
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data
    Estimate the maximum speed of a horse. Assume that a horse is 1.8 m tall and .5 m wide.

    2. Relevant equations

    3. The attempt at a solution

    This problem is from the work & energy chapter in my book. However, I can't figure out the relevance of the dimensions of the horse. I don't even know where to start. Does this have something to do with horsepower? I'm confused.
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 12, 2008 #2
    Hmmm... the dimensions probably have to do with the force of drag:

    (1/4)(.9 m^2)v^2= Drag

    So, the only force acting on the horse is drag:

    Drag= (.225)v^2

    P= Fvcostheta

    So maybe the power of a horse is 1hp? 1hp = 746 W
    746W= .225*v^2 * v
    746 J/s = .225 v^3
    v=14.9 m/s ??????
    Last edited: Apr 12, 2008
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