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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How does rocket thrust work?

I can't seem to find a specific answer to this anywhere. I understand that in a rocket there is a chemical reaction that causes gas particles to leave the rocket at high velocity. By Newton's third ...
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16 views

Kinetic Energy in the Center of Mass Frame

Given two bodies moving along a line, I can find the velocity of the center of mass frame. Taking the time derivative of the Galilean transformation I get $v'=v-v_{cm}$ By definition, the total ...
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1answer
92 views

mass attached to spring rotates in a horizontal circle [closed]

So here is the question I have: A mass of 2kg rotates at 1m/s in a horizontal circle on a table at the end of a spring with an elastic constant of 50N/m. If the original length of the spring is 2 ...
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74 views

Rocket velocity during fuel burn [closed]

I know the formula for the velocity of a rocket after the on board fuel has been used up: $$ \Delta v = v_{ex} \ln\left( \frac{m_i}{m_e} \right) - gt $$ where: $v_{ex}$ is the exhaust velocity ...
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74 views

Why two colliding bodies exert varying forces on each other during the course of their collison?

Suppose a bat hits a ball .What is the explanation of why the force is not constant during the course of the collison. At certain instants both ball and bat exert varying degrees of force on each ...
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252 views

Why do particles of equal mass (with one at rest) undergoing elastic collisions scatter at only right angles?

This is from the Section 9.6, page 351 of "Classical Dynamics of Particles and Systems" by Thornton and Marion. By setting a up a system where mass 1 has initial momentum $m_1 u_1$ and mass 2 is at ...
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344 views

What is “momentum density” and why it important to QFT?

I am reading Quantum Field Theory for the Gifted Amateur. On page 98, they provide a summary of a basic canonical quantization procedure: Step I: Write down a classical Lagrangian density in ...
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471 views

Does conservation of momentum mean a gyroscopic inertial thruster cannot work?

There is a device called the gyroscopic inertial thruster. Here is a Wikipedia article on it. I believe that this device cannot possibly work and that conservation of momentum proves that it cannot ...
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3answers
2k views

Impulse and force in a karate chop, can we maximize force minimizing the time of impact?

I have heard that we can maximize the force by minimizing the time of impact in a punch. If that is true, the paradox is if we increase the time of contact with the same amount of force still we ...
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16k views

What is the relation between kinetic energy and momentum? [closed]

If kinetic energy is doubled, what happens to momentum? Is it also doubled? I've tried working through the formulas for each but keep getting lost. $$KE=\frac{mv^2}{2}$$ $$p=mv$$ so if ...
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253 views

Effect of movements of astronauts on International Space Station

I know that astronauts move in and around in ISS. When they move they also touch the modules of ISS and sometimes they apply force on the module to move. When this happens, as far as I know it affects ...
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859 views

Why does a Ball bounce back if Forces are Equal and Opposite?

When a ball is thrown onto a wall, the ball exerts a force onto the wall. According to Newton's Third Law, the wall will exert an equal and opposite force to the ball. Thus, how would the ball be able ...
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132 views

Recommendation on ADM mass and Bondi mass

I want to learn some advanced topics in GR, such as ADM 4-momentum and Bondi 4-momentum. However nearly no textbooks on GR contain this area, such as Wald, MTW, Hawking, Carroll and Zee's. Can anyone ...
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1answer
103 views

Spacetime and the conservation laws

I'm reading Peter Atkins' book, Galileo's Finger, and in the chapter on energy, he makes the points that the conservation of momentum stems from the shape of space (that it's smooth and not lumpy) and ...
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108 views

Homework Question involving Momentum [closed]

I'm trying to solve a homework problem as review for an exam I have tomorrow and I was wondering if someone could help explain it to me. It is as follows: You are at Lowe’s shopping for bricks ...
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421 views

Shortcut to find $\hat{p}^2$ expectation value

I have been going through several calculations where I am asked to calculate $\langle p^2 \rangle$ and the task is proving to be pretty tedious. Does anyone know of a shortcut for this? Such as with ...
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493 views

Why does a car bonnet (hood) rise when you connect the clutch with a brake on?

Is the rotational force to overcome the brakes moved to the opposite effect of moving the car chassis, until the brake is released?
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3k views

Impulse and Change In Momentum — Are they really different?

My entire time learning physics, I have simply assumed that Impulse and Change in momentum are the same thing. It makes sense -- Force changes momentum, and impulse finds the total of force. ...
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999 views

Effect of incoming force on linear vs. angular velocity

First of all, I should note that I'm a programmer and have only an extremely basic understanding of physics; I only know how to explain my question in layman's terms and I apologize if I'm unclear or ...
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21k views

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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1answer
51 views

Is there a heuristic argument for the expression $ \textbf{g} = \frac {\mathbf{S}}{c^2}$?

Electromagnetic momentum density and the Poynting vector are related by the simple expression: $$ \textbf{g} = \frac {\mathbf{S}}{c^2}$$ It can be rigorously derived from Maxwell's equations, but is ...
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99 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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125 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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Elastic Collision And Momentum

The question I am working on is, "Two blocks are free to slide along the friction-less wooden track shown below. The block of mass $m_1 = 4.98~kg$ is released from the position shown, at height $h = ...
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343 views

Momentum And A Car Collision

I am studying an example problem, concerning the very topic mentioned in the title. In this example problem, a car has a head-on collision with the wall; the initial and final velocity are known, as ...
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1k views

When should we use the concept of Impulse/Momentum instead of Force?

In my notes it says "The ideas of impulse and momentum is useful in solving problems where:- a) the force F is not easily calculable (e.g. sudden impact or blow) b) the impulse force is ...
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420 views

Simple conservation of momentum

Imagine a particle moving right at 10 mph. It enters a cylinder with an open left end and closed right end. The cylinder is moving right at 1 mph. In the frame of reference of the cylinder, the ...
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27 views

Is it possible to measure the spin of an electron without moving it?

I know that the position and spin operators commute, so it is theoretically possible. What I want to know is, what experiments currently exist that achieve this?
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40 views

How to write the velocity of gas in rocket motion

Consider the motion of a rocket of mass $m$ in space with gas expelled at relative velocity $u$. I found two different version of writing the momentum of the system on Klepper Kolenkow and Morin book. ...
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30 views

How can you calculate the thrust-to-weight ratio of a gun?

Is there some formula I can apply to the weight of a gun, along with the force of thrust it creates, and calculate if it will be able to lift itself off the ground or not? Without actually handling ...
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1answer
50 views

Does solar eclipse have impact over increase of earth's temperature?

Does a solar eclipse have an impact on global temperature? Wired theory : When I jump, does the Earth recoil? Yes, the Earth has to move in some way for momentum to be conserved. However, since ...
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77 views

Can a submarine be powered by a wind turbine?

This is not intended as a realistic way for propulsion of submarines, it is just an interesting thought experiment. Say I want to travel directly towards the wind, only powered by the wind. This is ...
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1answer
52 views

Calculating post-collision velocity [closed]

Consider two persons $p1$ and $p2$ of the same mass , such that they are together moving rightward with a velocity of $v/2$ Now person $p1$ pushes $p2$ in the left direction. According to newton's ...
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81 views

When a ball bounces on a wall at an angle, why does the angle of incidence equal angle of reflection?

When a ball is thrown to a wall without spin and bounces, supposing it's an elastic collision, why does the angle of incidence equal the angle "reflection" (relatively to the normal), why isn't it any ...
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92 views

conservation of momentum? [closed]

At hyperphysics I got this image, with the same description in text as is in this image It says that when a massive particle (say $A$) moving with a velocity collides with an object having a ...
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1answer
100 views

Mathematical proof of an electron cant absorb a photon [duplicate]

How can we mathematically prove that a free electron cant absorb a photon totally?
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1answer
124 views

two object connected by a spring : momentum/energy topic [closed]

Here is my question below: Question Two objects A and B, connected by a light elastic spring with elastic constant 5.0 N/m, are initially at rest. The mass A is 2.0 kg and the mass B is 1.0 kg. ...
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1answer
60 views

Angular Momentum and Kepler's Second Law

Let me preface by saying that I get the gist of the conservation of angular momentum, at least qualitatively. To better illustrate my question, I will consider the case of a planet orbiting a star. ...
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6answers
129 views

How is momentum conserved when is is only dependent on mass and velocity, and so many other factors come into play?

I've been trying to get a good grip on the difference between conservation laws. Momentum is particularly tricky, I don't understand how quantities like $m\mathbf v$ can be conserved when other things ...
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1answer
71 views

Clarification in deriving the radial momentum operator $p_r$

In deriving an expression for $p_r$, a particle's radial momentum, I am unsure what is happening at a certain step. The derivation given in The Physics of Quantum Mechanics by Binney and Skinner is as ...
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1answer
50 views

How do I solve for $v_2$ where $mv_1^2 + MU_1^2 = mv_2^2 + M U_2^2$ and $MU_1 - Mv_1 = MU_2 - mv_2$ by eliminating $U_2$?

I was trying to solve the head on collision slingshot problem where the rocket moving with speed $v_1$ approaches a planet which is moving with speed $U_1$. I wanted the final speed of the rocket ...
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1answer
149 views

Application of Heisenberg's uncertainty principle on photons

While I was hobby-reading about quantum mechanics I came across Heisenberg's theory. But while I was trying to understand it I thought of this: if the speed of light (as well as the momentum of a ...
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1answer
75 views

Understanding elastic collisions of objects with the same velocities

I am having trouble understanding the following statement from my book: The law of cosines tells us that if the sides of a triangle obey the Pythagorean formula, they must form a right triangle. ...
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73 views

Invariance and conservation

Why in a collision between particles is the four-momentum conserved within a frame of reference but not invariant between frames of reference?
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Trouble Understanding the Concept of Invariance

I am reading the book by Brian Cox & Jeff Forshaw: "Why does E=MC^2". It is getting to the point of explaining what invariance is. According to Cox & Forshaw, invariance states that the laws ...
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2answers
319 views

Linear momentum experiment

trying to design an experiment for linear momentum. Could someone tell me whether this would work. Get a wooden toy car and attach it to some string which is hung over a pulley on the end of the ...
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1answer
264 views

After a glancing collision, why do air hockey pucks spins around in circle?

For a lab testing the conservation of momentum, I had to hit an air hockey puck so that it would hit another stationary puck in a glancing collision. After the pucks collided, they travel their ...
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1answer
68 views

Where would be the source of thrust for a rocket thruster in space?

I am making a game that involves spaceships and I was building an engine block. That engine block spawns a "thruster fire" under it that represents the...thruster fire. My question revolves around ...
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418 views

Why does it hurt more to fall from 10 stories, than 1?

$F=ma$. Falling from any distance, mass stays the same, and acceleration due to gravity stays the same. So, why does it hurt more, the longer you fall?
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How would a plane hitting a ball move (opposite of Pong)?

When a moving ball hits a stationary plane at an angle of incidence to the normal, it bounces away at the same angle (the angle of reflection), which is commonly understood. My question is 1) What ...