Newtonian mechanics covers the discussion of the movement of classical bodies under the influence of forces by making use of Newton’s three laws. For more general discussion of energy, momentum conservation etc., use classical-mechanics, for Newton’s description of gravity, use newtonian-gravity.

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Period of pendulum in falling lift

A simple pendulum suspended from the ceiling of a stationary lift has period $T_0$. When the lift descends at steady speed, the period is $T_1$. When the lift descends with constant downward ...
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451 views

Newton's third law does not apply to the kinetic energy formula?

Here is a classic problem: A 60kg boy and a 40kg girl are sitting in front of each other on skateboards on a frictionless horizontal surface. The boy pushes the girl and the girl gains a velocity ...
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407 views

How to reconcile the two definitions of work? (mechanical and thermodynamical)

When studying classical mechanics, work is defined as: $W_M=\int F_{tot} \hspace{2 mm} dx$. However, for thermodynamics, work is defined as: $W_T=\int -F_{ext} \hspace{2 mm} dx$. I'm having trouble ...
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925 views

Conical Pendulum — Can it rotate at 90 degrees?

I have a simple question, can you spin a conical pendulum fast enough so that it rotates at 90 degrees? The equation is $\tan(\theta)=v^2/rg$ , but at 90 degrees, $\tan(\theta)=\infty$ ... so what ...
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6k views

Does Earth's Rotation Affect Its Shape?

The question I am working on is, "Consider the following. (a) Find the angular speed of Earth's rotation about its axis. rad/s (b) How does this rotation affect the shape of Earth?" I am fully ...
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Newton's 3rd Law: How can I break things?

If I punch a wooden board hard enough and it breaks in two, has the board still exerted a force of equal magnitude on my fist? When the board breaks in two due to my force, the halves have a ...
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6k views

Does a car use friction to move?

When a car's engine injects fuel into the cylinder chambers, the reaction creates a force that generates rotational momentum to the shaft and over the transmission, it translates that power to the ...
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3answers
218 views

Armageddon prevention

I was watching the movie Armageddon and it made me think of a few things. We would probably not need to send a crew to blow the asteroid in two, I think we could still send a warhead with enough power ...
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1answer
894 views

Add air resistance to projectile motion

I am given an initial x and y position and initial velocity and I was asked to graph the trajectory in 1 second intervals. This is what I have so far: If $x_0 = 1, v_{0x} = 70, y_0 = 0, v_{0y} = 80, ...
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2answers
352 views

Why is moment dependent on the distance from the point of rotation to the force?

The formula for moment is: $$M = Fd$$ Where F is the force applied on the object and d is the perpendicular distance from the point of rotation to the line of action of the force. Why? Intuitively, ...
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1answer
496 views

What if exactly half the Earth's population jumped at one instant? + Secondary Question

I read somewhere that when you jump, the sole effect caused by your jump on the earth moves it about $10^{-18}m$ (I don't remember the figure exactly, but I think it was that). However - obviously ...
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260 views

Velocity of an object undergoing homogenous acceleration

So I was considering the following problem within the context of Special Relativity: Given an object O, with initial velocity v, undergoing constant acceleration at a rate of a, I want to express the ...
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1answer
1k views

Kinematics with non constant acceleration

A particle experiences an acceleration described by $$ a=kx^{-2} $$ where x is the displacement from the origin and k is an arbitrary constant. To what value does the velocity v of the particle ...
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1answer
188 views

Explanation of a Foucault pendulum

The equations of motion of a Foucault pendulum is given by: $$\ddot{x} = 2\omega \sin\lambda \dot{y} - \frac{g}{L}x$$ $$\ddot{y} = -2\omega \sin\lambda \dot{x} - \frac{g}{L}y$$ where $\omega$ is ...
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1answer
610 views

Skiing downhill

The other day on skiing holiday we've been arguing about whether an adult has weight advantage over a child when skiing downhill. I was claiming that gravity is a constant regardless of object's ...
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1answer
713 views

Rolling (without slipping) ball on a moving surface

I've been looking at examples of a ball rolling without slipping down an inclined surface. What happens if the incline angle changes as the ball is rolling? More precisely I've been trying to find ...
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0answers
201 views

2D Car Physics including Throttle

For a simulation for testing on automatic cruise control, I came across the equation: $$ v_{n+1} = (1 - k_1 / m) v_n + (1 - k_b) \begin{pmatrix} T_n \\ θ_n \\ \end{pmatrix} $$ where: $T$ = ...
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2answers
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Why is the center-of-mass of 2 bodies at the focus of their elliptical orbits?

Why is the center-of-mass of 2 bodies (which interact only via Newtonian gravity) located at a focus of each of the elliptical orbits? I know that when there are no external forces, the center of ...
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3answers
1k views

Flying a toy helicopter inside an accelerating train [duplicate]

Scenario: You ride in a train, you have this helicopter toy. The train is not yet running when you flew your helicopter on a constant altitude (say 1 meter above the train's floor). Question: What ...
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3answers
573 views

Train crash: are these situations alike? [duplicate]

I was just wondering... I believe that if a car travelling 50 miles per hour crashes into a wall, the result should be the same as crashing to another car also travelling 50 miles per hour (but in the ...
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3answers
668 views

What is the probability that a half dollar coin lands on heads?

I recently found a half dollar coin in my basement. It's strange but I think when you flip it, that heads is a big favorite to land face up! I really could have sworn I heard that somewhere before; ...
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116 views

Distinction between torque and force

Distinction between Torque and Force. Consider a case when a cylinder is rolling down a rough inclined plane. While analysing its motion, we consider the force applied by the friction and the ...
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1answer
129 views

Tension in an Atwoods machine conceptual?

Assuming $T_1$ is the force that acts on box $1$ and $T_2$ is the force that acts on box $2$. Exactly what causes the Tension? Why does $T_1 = T_2$? The problem is we are told to memorize that ...
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1answer
248 views

Meaning of “Simple” in Simple Pendulum and Simple Harmonic Motion?

I have gone through the Phys.SE question Why is simple harmonic motion called so?. From the 1st answer of this Question it seems to me that another type of "Harmonic motion" is "Damped Harmonic ...
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1answer
201 views

Geometry in diagonal matrix and inertia tensor

For this problem, can anyone explain to me why when $x_1$ axis is aligned with the diagonal of the cube, the resulting inertia tensor will become diagonal? How to interpret this result geometrically? ...
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333 views

Describing a motion of gyroscope with gimbal

Can you tell be how to set the equations to describe the motion of this machine in movie "Contact": https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TSaO9VGjLXc This is gyroscope with gimbal, am I right?
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1answer
170 views

Determine orbital position after change in velocity

I am working on a satellite simulator for a project/game and I am stuck on this one bit of physics. So far I have a satellite that revolves around earth on a 2D plane following Keplerian motion using ...
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2answers
601 views

Intuitive understanding of centripetal vs. centrifugal force

I am having trouble understanding how centripetal force works intuitively. This is my claim. When I have a mass strapped on a string and spin it around, I feel the mass pulling my hand. So, I want ...
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3answers
561 views

Beads in 'perpetual motion'?

This page has an interesting video of beads 'syphoning' out of a glass beaker: http://blog.zennioptical.com/weekly-optical-illusion-crazy-beads/ The host has a few explanations for the effect, but ...
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676 views

Ice skater increase of energy

This may be a very basic question but I am not seeing how it works. Consider the standard example of an ice skate rotating about his/her center of mass and pulling in his/her arms. The torque is zero ...
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1answer
578 views

Time of a ball going up and down with air resistance

A ball is shot directly upward, and then it comes back to the place where it was shot. Suppose we have air resistance. Suppose $t_1$ is the time period from the moment that the ball was shot to the ...
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1answer
1k views

Direction of friction on particle placed on a rotating turntable

If a particle is placed on a rotating turntable then the particle has a tendency to slip tangentially with respect to the underneath surface... So the friction should act tangentially to the ...
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1answer
2k views

Trajectory of projectile thrown downhill

I'm teaching myself mechanics, and set out to solve a problem determining the optimum angle to throw a projectile when standing on a hill, for maximum range. My answer seems almost plausible, except ...
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1answer
123 views

How to find the value of the parameter $a$ in this transfer function?

I am given a transfer function of a second-order system as: $$G(s)=\frac{a}{s^{2}+4s+a}$$ and I need to find the value of the parameter $a$ that will make the damping coefficient $\zeta=.7$. I am not ...
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2answers
574 views

How could this damped oscillator ever go to infinity? Or negative infinity for that matter?

This is an ODE problem,but I cannot visualize why it can go to infinity or negative infinity. Consider $$x'' -6x' + 8x = 0$$ Where $x''$ is acceleration, $-6x'$ is the ...
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1answer
6k views

Would a light or a heavy ball roll fastest down a slope?

A small, light ball and a larger, heavier ball are released from the top of a slope. Which will move further? which will come down faster?
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823 views

What is a Free Body Diagram?

I have this problem: A 10 kg box is resting on a frictionless table and someone drags it by a string at a 30 degree angle to the horizontal with a force of 40 Newtons. Find the acceleration of the ...
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1answer
65 views

Find center of mass and moment applied on beam structure [closed]

I have a simple physics problem to solve but it is giving me a slightly difficult time to figure out. The problem: I have a beam structure with same cross section. It consists of three beam. First ...
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4answers
93 views

Which is the right explanation for rocket motion? [duplicate]

What actually causes a rocket to move? Is it the pressure in the rocket engine or the amount and velocity of mass that is being ejected out. The reason I am asking is, I found these two explanations ...
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1answer
107 views

Ball flying towards me - Newton's third law is violated?

I was trying to answer the question of the flying ball here on the basis of Newtons third law and Momentum conservation. Here is what I have tried. Lets take $m_1$ (the ball) hits $m_2$ (the man). ...
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1answer
82 views

Having problem in understanding the coefficient of restitution

Newton discovered that the relative velocity of separation of the two bodies after the collision is always proportional to relative velocity of approach before collision. The proportionality ...
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4answers
182 views

Where does the energy required to stop a moving body come from and go?

For a long time, I have been thinking about this: In order to stop a moving body, I have to apply impulse to change the existing momentum to $0$. For the impulse I have to impart force on the moving ...
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1answer
138 views

Does Newton's first law apply also to non-newtonian physics?

I think I understand than an example of Newton's first law (intertial frames) would be a single asteroid in vaccum with no other bodies around, a comet in such free space or likewise. Then I think the ...
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1answer
400 views

Moment of inertia of a cylinder about its base

I've tried to find the moment of inertia of a cylinder rotating about an axis parallel to its base (i.e about the 'End diameter') as one can see here . But when I checked my results with different ...
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1answer
151 views

How to model a rising helium balloon?

I'm trying to model the ascent of a helium filled weather balloon from 0km to 25km altitude. The plan is to eventually use a python script to calculate the time taken to reach 25km. However, I don't ...
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2answers
216 views

Weighing a flying bird [duplicate]

Let thing of a bird standing still in a box on top of a weighing machine that shows a mass $m_0$. Now, imagine that the bird is flying, still in the same box and the same weighing machine shows a mass ...
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3answers
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How to derive the period of spring pendulum?

So I wanted to find out how to (simply, if that's possible) derive the formula for a period of spring pendulum: $T=2\pi \sqrt{\frac{m}{k}}$. However, Google doesn't help me here as all I see is the ...
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1answer
504 views

Mass points of a Mass-spring model

Let's say I have a mass spring model like the one in the picture below: So, there are 3 parts of the spring joined together in an equilateral triangular manner. Each of the joints has a mass of ...
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2answers
978 views

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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1answer
521 views

Calculating torque in a structure

I posted this on math stack exchange but realize it is more a physics question. I have a structure which is set up as shown in the image. A weight hangs from point A with mass $m$. Joint B is free ...