Tagged Questions

The law of conservation of energy, which states that the amount of energy in a system is constant. For questions about Earth's environment, see the climate-science tag instead.

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How do I calculate the work done by snow when stopping a person from falling from a plane? [closed]

I have the following data: Assume a man falling from a plane from a height of 370 m ($=h$) high (Straight down). The man falls into a pile of snow and creates a 1.1 m ($=d$) deep crater. The man has a ...
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What does the absence of hydrodynamic entrance effects do to the momentum conservation Equation?

I am trying to do a homework problem where we re-write the mass, momentum and energy conservation formulas for downward flow in a vertical pipe and it says "where all hydrodynamic entrance effects ...
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Why positronium can annihilate in vacuum?

I thought that the annihilation process of positronium cannot take place without a third-party particle. This can be directly derived from energy & momentum conservation: energy conservation: ...
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How energy conservation is not violated here?

If I lift a book of mass $m$ from the ground and put it at height $h$,then initial and final energies with respect to ground are 0 and $mgh$ respectively. So how energy is conserved here?
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A variable mass system (cart of sand with a hole)

Imagine we have a frictionless semicircular skateboard ramp and we release a cart filled with sand from one edge of the ramp. The cart has a hole and it loses sand at a constant rate. My question is ...
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If an electron can't go faster than light, how is energy conserved here?

I came across a physics question recently about accelerating electrons with potential differences and it got me wondering. Here is the question that brought the concept to mind. First off, imagine ...
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Noether Theorem and Energy conservation in classical mechanics

I have a problem deriving the conservation of energy from time translation invariance. The invariance of the Lagrangian under infinitesimal time displacements $t \rightarrow t' = t + \epsilon$ can be ...
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Rigid bodies - the wheel

As I've been taught lately in my mechanics course: the wheel has a unique property: at every moment of motion, the touching point between the wheel and the ground is not in movement and ...
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James Joule's Conservation of Energy

Is there a manifest or documentation of the original Conservation of Energy as stated by James Joule word for word? Edit 1.1: I found Joule's Memoir on google, skimming through to find any conclusive ...
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When is energy conserved in a collision and not momentum?

Consider the following example: A bullet of mass 45g is fired at a speed of 220 m/s into a 5.0 kg sandbag hanging from a string from the ceiling. The sandbag absorbs the bullet and begins to ...
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Sign of $dr$ in Schwarzschild geodesics

There is an equation that relates energy $E$, angular momentum $L$ and other constants and variables to find $\left(\frac{dr}{d\tau}\right)^2$ in a plane. ...
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What is going on with star's energy?

The sun radiates $3.8 × 10^{26} J$ energy each second, this energy is absorbed by various celestial objects but most of it is reflected or emitted back in the space, similarly there must be energy ...
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What is happening to rotational kinetic energy when moment of inertia is changed?

I know this question is asked here a lot, but I just had to ask this to finalise the concept. When a system lets say a rod of length $L$ and mass $M$ is rotating with angular speed $omega_1$ its ...
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Where does the kinetic energy go?

A uniform cylinder was placed on a frictionless bearing and set to rotate about its vertical axis. After a cylinder has reached a specific state of rotation it is heated without any mechanical support ...
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Solids: is energy expended in some fashion by, say, a table to keep the top from sinking down against gravity?

A friend and I were discussing this, and couldn't decide. Since it takes energy to physically raise something up above the planet's surface, does it continue to require energy in order to keep it ...
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Finding the value of velocity $u$ [closed]

A block of mass $m$ is pushed towards a moveable wedge of mass $\eta m$ and height $h$, with a velocity $u$. All surfaces are smooth. The minimum value of $u$ for which the block will reach the top of ...
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Physical interpretation of $Q^i = \partial _\nu T^{i \nu}$

I'm trouble with exercise 1.8 of Carroll's Space-Time and Geometry: If $\partial_\nu T^{\mu \nu} = Q^\mu$, what physically does the spatial vector $Q^i$ represent? Use the dust energy momentum ...
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Collision Between Two Particles: Writing the Mass As A Function of The Angle [duplicate]

Suppose we have two masses, $m_1$ and $m_2$, where $m_2$ is at rest, and $m_1$ is headed directly towards $m_2$. I would like to write the ratio of the masses as a function of the angle. Using ...
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How does potential energy work in the context of objects in space?

It's said that potential energy is "energy of position." If an object is sitting on a shelf five feet above the floor, its potential energy can be thought of as equal to the amount of energy that ...
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Conservation of mass energy and kinetic energy in different reference frames

With a little work it's easy to show that kinetic energy by itself is not necessarily preserved when switching between frames of reference. And it is my understanding that energy should be preserved ...
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Do accelerated charges radiate or not?

This questions has been asked all over the net (here included) but I can't find a satisfactory answer or discussion. Some say it does not radiate if the acceleration is caused by a uniform gravity ...
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How certain is the heat death of the universe?

According to our current scientific knowledge, how certain is it that heat death shall be the ultimate fate of our universe, and why? Are there any serious hypotheses competing with heat death, and if ...
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How would you quantify and predict the internal friction and efficiency of a bungee cord?

I am in an introductory physics class and we have been working with Gravitational Potential Energy, Elastic Potential Energy, Kinetic Energy and the Law of Conservation of Energy in relation to bungee ...
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Why are rockets so big?

I'm curious why rockets are so big in their size. Since both the gravitational potential one need to overcome in order to put thing into orbit, and the chemical energy burned from the fuel, are ...
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Work done by a conservative force

Wikipedia: A conservative force is a force with the property that the work done in moving a particle between two points is independent of the taken path. Equivalently, if a particle travels in a ...
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Where does the extra force generated by a lever come from?

Given an object being pulled down to earth by a force of 1000 lb: If a machine were to lift it off the ground for me, and I grabbed on to the rope before it was released, there is no way in the world ...
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Perfect elastic collision and velocity transfer

So my teacher told me that when you have two identical balls in a perfectly elastic collision, the first ball A will collide with B and afterwards A will stop and B continue. Why is this? Doesn't ...
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Finding max height of a mass launched by a spring?

I have the following problem on my homework. The actual problem has numbers, but I figure using symbolic notation will help me understand the concept in the long run. A block of mass $M$ is launched ...
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Understanding Where I Went Wrong in a Linear Conservation Problem

I have the following physics problem. In the figure below, a stationary block explodes into two pieces L and R that slide across a frictionless floor and then into regions with friction, where they ...
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Physics transformation energy [closed]

A 15kg child slides down a 2.3m -high playground slide. She starts from rest, and her speed at the bottom is 2.1m/s . What is the change in the thermal energy of the slide and the seat of her pants? ...
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How to find the compression of a spring attached to an object [closed]

I am having some trouble figuring out the equation needed to solve this problem. A 3.0-kg block slides along a frictionless tabletop at 8.0 m/s toward a second block (at rest) of mass 4.5 kg. A ...