In introductory mechanics, the momentum of a particle is its mass times its velocity. In electrodynamics, the momentum of a field is proportional to the cross-product of the electric field with the magnetic field. In special relativity, momentum is generalized to four-momentum.

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Newton's second law?

$F=ma$. A car strikes a wall at 60 mph. Its acceleration is zero at the time. The force of the car against the wall or vice versa is? To look at the car the force is not zero. Please explain.
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Why is momentum conserved when a ball hits a vertical wall?

Almost in every book on physics, there's an example of conservation of momentum when the ball that is moving horizontally in the air, hits some massive wall. They claim that the return speed of the ...
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Conservation of Linear Momentum at the point of collision

This is a pretty basic conceptual question about the conservation of linear momentum. Consider an isolated system of 2 fixed-mass particles of masses $m_1$ and $m_2$ moving toward each other with ...
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200 views

effect of vertical collision on kinetic friction and subsequent change in horizontal velocity

Suppose somehow a block of mass $m$ is moving on ground, and the coefficient of kinetic friction between the block and the block is $\mu_k$. If I drop a tennis ball(of same mass) on it from a ...
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81 views

Minimum $E$ of $p\bar{p}$-collision for $q\bar{q}$ pair with mass $m_q$

I am currently working out the energy required to create a particle anti-particle pair from a collision of a proton travelling along the x-direction with an anti-proton which is at rest. The particle ...
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Movement of man and ladder and their center of mass

Suppose there is a massless frictionless pulley. A rope over it carries a mass $M$ and on other side carries a ladder of mass $(M-m)$ and a man on that ladder, of mass $m$. Now the man starts ...
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287 views

Where do the conservation laws come from?

I know the conservation of energy comes from Noether's theorem via the time-translational symmetry, and if I remember correctly, the conservation of momentum comes from space-translational symmetry. ...
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58 views

Need help with relativistic dynamics

I understand the concept, but I'm having a hard time applying the consequences of conservation (energy/momentum). For example: A proton with kinetic energy 437 MeV hits a proton at rest elastically ...
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3answers
243 views

How does the solar sailing concept work?

Wikipedia describes solar sailing as a form of spacecraft propulsion using a combination of light and high speed ejected gasses from a star to push large ultra-thin mirrors to high speeds. I ...
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236 views

Relativistic kinematics of particle decay

Suppose a particle decays to three other particles. The masses of all particles are assumed to be known and we work in the rest frame of the parent particle. So there are 12 parameters for this ...
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259 views

Inelastic collision and impulse

Suppose I have some cart moving horizontally in a straight line and with a constant velocity, and there is no friction between the surface and the cart. Now, I throw a plasticine on the cart at some ...
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2k views

Conservation of Momentum from Recoil Speed

A gun has a recoil speed of 2 m/s when firing. If the gun has a mass of 2kg and the bullet has a mass of 10g (0.01 kg) what speed does the bullet come out at? The gun has zero total momentum before ...
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390 views

Nuclear reaction: creation of deuterium

A proton p collides with a neutron(at rest) n at relatively low-energies and creates a 'deuterium-core' d: $$p+n->d+\gamma$$ Find the wavelength for the photon as a function of the proton's ...
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How do I find the force from drop shock using material properties?

I am dropping a cylindrical cast iron bar with a know elastic modulus and poisson's ratio, $E_{1}$ and $v_{1}$, onto a flat beam of elastic modulus, $E_{2}$ and $v_{2}$ so there is tangential drop ...
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291 views

Bat hitting a ball

When a bat hits a ball, consider two cases: 1) The batsman goes for a defense, and stonewalls it, to reduce its speed. 2) the batsman goes for a shot, e.g. a home-run, etc. in which case will the ...
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1answer
139 views

Shooting a bullet at a system of blocks [closed]

So, I made this question up myself.... and I'm curious about the answer. It requires only secondary-school-level knowledge of physics: You have a surface (ground) with a certain coefficient of ...
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168 views

A thought on definition of momentum

Well, this is a simple, basic and I think even silly doubt. The first time I saw the definition of momentum as $p = mv$ I started to think why this is a good definition. So I've read the beginning of ...
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272 views

Can a balloon be used as an anchor point for a pulley?

For a physics/ engineering contest, I want to use a large balloon as an anchor point for a pulley. This would allow me to raise and drop masses. However, in testing, when I pull on the pulley the ...
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2answers
324 views

Do photons actually generate a slight kinetic force?

My question is even though photons have no (rest) mass, do they emit a external force due to EM radiation causing electrons to be excited and jump to higher energy shells which electrons have mass ...
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Calculating force of impact

Since $\text{force = mass}\times\text{acceleration}$, is it right to say that an object traveling at a high constant velocity (zero acceleration), exerts zero force upon impact with a stationary ...
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87 views

Can electromagnetic momentum be introduced at pre-university level as for electromagnetic energy?

Electromagnetic energy is introduced at pre-university level, starting with static electric energy followed by static magnetic energy. But the introduction of electromagnetic momentum usually has to ...
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1answer
715 views

Calculating a 2D collision between two perfectly circular disks [duplicate]

Assume I have two disks, $p_1$ and $p_2$, of radius $r$, with their own velocities (preferably in $(x,y)$ form, but $(m, \theta)$ works too) and masses (unit-less, but same unit) collide in two ...
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A 0.1kg ball of dough is thrown up with a velocity of 15m/s. What is the momentum halfway up? [closed]

I know that $p=mv$ and (0.1kg)(15m/s)=1.5 kg m/s and the momentum at the vertex is 0, but what is the momentum halfway up?
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296 views

Combining Conservation Laws ~ Homework Problem Guidance

Problem 8.79 - Combining Conservation Laws A 5.00-kg chunk of ice is sliding at 12.0 m/s on the floor of an ice-covered valley when it collides with and sticks to another 5.00-kg chunk of ice that is ...
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What is the difference between impulse and momentum?

What is the difference between impulse and momentum? The question says it all...I know the second of of them is mass * velocity, but what is the first one for, and when is it used? Also, what are its ...
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506 views

What happens if object is thrown in empty space?

If I throw a object in empty space, I apply a force to throw that. Then it gains some acceleration and it's speed increases. So will it's speed keep on increasing, or it will get stable? If yes, ...
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182 views

What is the momentum of these emitted photons?

5 x 10^7 kg of radioactive material emits energy in the form of photons of red light (700 nm). (Note: photons have no mass.) What is the momentum of each photon? ...
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87 views

Mean value of the force in a collision problem

I have the following problem: A point with mass $m$ and speed $v$ collides with a fixed obstacle and penetrates it, stopping in a space $\Delta x$. Calculate $\Delta t $. I understand the way my ...
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3k views

Small car colliding with large truck

A small car collides with a large truck. Why do both vehicles experience the same magnitude of force? Wouldn't the large vehicle experience less force than the small one?
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221 views

How to get the new direction of 2 disks colliding?

I'm developing a 2D game including collisions between many disks. I would like to know how I can get the angle corresponding to the new direction of each disk. For every disk I have this information ...
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434 views

Impulse from absorbing a photon? Is there an increase in rest mass?

I'm going through A P French's special relativity. In one chapter (6) the following is set up: Suppose that a stationary particle of mass $M_0$ is struck by a photon of energy $Q$, which is ...
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2answers
127 views

Does spacetime have momentum?

In what sense can it be said that spacetime possesses momentum? Can an experiment be envisaged to test this question?
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104 views

particle accelerator in space

I'm attempting to learn special relativity and i'm having trouble calculating velocity and momentum for each part of the system after interactions. I wanted to know how fast a linear accelerator and ...
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Proof for $p=\gamma_Pmu$

As I'm reading about Relativistic Momentum, my book states the following: $$p=m \frac{\Delta x}{\Delta t}=m\frac{\Delta x}{\sqrt{(1-u^2/c^2)}\Delta t}=\frac{mu}{\sqrt{1-u^2/c^2}}=\gamma_Pmu$$ ...
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block slides on smooth triangular wedge kept on smooth floor.Find velocity of wedge when block reaches bottom

Find the velocity of the triangular block when the small block reaches the bottom: Here is what I did: The final velocity(at the bottom)of the small block of mass m is $\sqrt{2gh}$ along the plane ...
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315 views

Translation Invariance without Momentum Conservation?

Instead of the actual gravitational force, in which the two masses enter symmetrically, consider something like $$\vec F_{ab} = G\frac{m_a m_b^2}{|\vec r_a - \vec r_b|^2}\hat r_{ab}$$ where $\vec ...
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What is the result of a classical collision between THREE point particles at the same precise instant?

Classical Mechanics is said to be deterministic, a statement that nearly always is followed by that quote from Laplace, something like If at one time, one knew the positions and velocities of all ...
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Simple elastic collision

If a particle with mass $m$ collides with a wall at right angles, and the collision is perfectly elastic. The particle hits the wall at $v\ ms^{-1}$. There is no friction or gravity. So the particle ...
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937 views

Can conservation of momentum related to Newton's first law?

I know this is a scrap of thought, but the first law states that (from Wikipedia): If an object experiences no net force, then its velocity is constant Is it describing the conservation of ...
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Is air drag equation in term of momentum still valid?

This is the known equation of air drag: $$m{\bf a}=mg-\mathcal D=mg-b{\bf v}.$$ Considering this, is air drag equation in term of momentum still valid? $$m{\bf v}=mv_g-b{\bf r}.$$
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Classical mechanics and the speed of a train-mosquito collision, when perfectly rigid bodies

This is all under the assumption that they are perfectly rigid bodies: A train is moving at 300m/s. A mosquito is moving directly towards it, head-on, at 4m/s. When the mosquito and the train ...
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1answer
802 views

Elastic collision in two dimensions

Suppose a particle with mass $m_1$ and speed $v_{1i}$ undergoes an elastic collision with stationary particle of mass $m_2$. After the collision, particle of mass $m_1$ moves with speed $v_{1f}$ in a ...
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Early stages of a computational model for object movement charting

We would like to build a computational model capable of accurately predicting the position of any object inside a chamber at any given time. Inside the model we would have a number of smaller ...
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about wavefunction and vector entries

I am beginer of physics and I am studying some very fundamental idea of quantum mechanics by myself. In the introducing book I am reading, there is an example to show a particle diffraced by a slit or ...
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239 views

Displacement with zero velocity

I know that we can rotate a deformable object using internal forces only in space. Thus we can cause an angular displacement without the use of any external forces. The following youtube video shows ...
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1answer
154 views

4-momentum and an $y$ component of momentum

I have 2 coordinate systems which move along $x,x'$ axis. I have derived a Lorentz transformation for an $x$ component of momentum, which is one part of an 4-momentum vector $p_\mu$. This is my ...
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366 views

Why is the “canonical momentum” for the Dirac equation not defined in terms of the “gauge covariant derivative”?

The canonical momentum is always used to add an EM field to the Schrödinger/Pauli/Dirac equations. Why does one not use the gauge covariant derivative? As far as I can see, the difference is a factor ...
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153 views

Directionality of angular momentum

I was told that the sum of linear and angular momentum is conserved. Given that angular momentum's direction as a vector is completely arbitrary (I believe there is no physical reason for choosing ...
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687 views

Is the momentum operator well-defined in the basis of standing waves?

Suppose I want to describe an arbitrary state of a quantum particle in a box of side $L$. The relevant eigenmodes are those of standing waves, namely $$ \left<x|n\right>=\sqrt{\frac{2}{L}}\cdot ...
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Spring coupled platforms & conservation of momentum - can it be solved with freshman physics?

This question came up as an exercise in a first year undergraduate course I was a TA for. It turned out to be a lot more difficult (impossible?) than anticipated... Two platforms of mass $M_1$ and ...