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Momentum of a Broken Spaceship Piece After Explosion

A spaceship of mass 2.3*10^6 kg is cruising at a speed of 4.4*10^6 m/s when the antimatter reactor fails, blowing the ship into three pieces. One section, having a mass of 5.1*10^5 kg, is blown straight backward with a speed of 2.1*10^6 m/s. A second piece, with mass 7.6*10^5 kg, continues forward at 1.1*10^6 m/s. What is the speed of the third piece in m/s?

Solution Preview

mass of spaceship M = 2.3*10^6 kg
velocity of spaceship V = 4.4*10^6 m/s

After a blow-up,
m1 = ...

Solution Summary

The solution draws an equation from the relevant theory and plugs in the given speeds of the two other spaceship debris pieces to find the velocity of the last part of the spaceship after engine trouble led to it being blown into three pieces.