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Head-On Collisions

In a head-on collision where the carts stick together after the collision,
a) What combinations of velocities will cause two carts of the same mass to be at rest after the collision? Explain.
b) What happens if a less massive cart is moving much faster than a more massive cart? Much slower? Explain.
c) What mathematical definition describes the momentum you would need to stop an oncoming vehicle traveling with a known mass and velocity? Should it depend on the mass, the velocity, or both?

Solution Preview

a) If two carts are moving towards each other with same speed (u), then they will stop after inelastic collision(stick to one another)
Because, v1 = v2 = (u1 + u2)/2 = (u - u)/2 = 0 ...

Solution Summary

Solution includes formula and explanations and rearranging of formula to answer part (b) in the two cases, faster and slower.