Teaching Physics with the Physics Suite

Edward F. Redish

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Balls up!

Consider two projectiles that can be shot upward by spring guns. Object A is made of solid aluminum and has a mass of 50 grams. Object B is made of cast iron and has a mass of 200 grams. For this problem, you may take the gravitational field strength to be g = 10 N/kg.

(a) Mass A is shot straight upward so that it exits the spring gun with a speed of 2.0 m/s. How high above the gun does it rise?

(b) Masses A and B are both shot straight upward at the same time. Mass A is shot with a speed of 2 m/s and mass B with a speed of 1 m/s. Which one hits the ground first?

(c) In the situation explained in case (b), which goes higher?

(d) The guns are tilted so that projectiles A and B follow the paths shown in the figure at the right. If both are shot off at the same time, which one reaches its target first?

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Page last modified September 23, 2008: K23