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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Centrifuge speed of an object higher than a stationary orbit

In the question At what altitude above equator do gravitational and centrifugal forces cancel each other?, I asked how high a tower on the equator has to be such that at its top, gravitational and ...
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392 views

Force acting on an object?

You have a bar of metal in an environment with no gravity. A force is applied on one end of it. How does it rotate? There is a non-zero torque on any random point selected on the bar. For example, ...
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Why doesn't mass of bob affect time period?

Please correct me if I'm going wrong - By the gravitation formula: $F = \frac{G m_1 m_2}{r^2} $, So if the mass of a bob is greater then the torque on it should increase because the Force increased ...
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7k 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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1answer
69 views

How does this formula for calculating the “mass sum” in a collision translate to 3D?

According this tutorial, formula number 5: $$j = \frac{-(1 + e)((V^{A} - V^{B}) * t)}{\frac{1}{mass^{A}} + \frac{1}{mass^{B}}}$$ translates into formula number 6: $$j = \frac{-(1 + e)((V^{A} - ...
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Can you lift a basket up while standing inside it? [closed]

Suppose you stand in a basket and you try to pull the handles of the basket. Will you be able to lift the basket from ground? Similarly, Baron Münchhausen allegedly pulled himself and the horse on ...
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3answers
163 views

Leading-order cause of diurnal (not semidiurnal) variations in $g$?

The following graph shows the result of a very impressive differential measurement of the gravitational field in Boulder, Colorado, over a period of a couple of days. Floris got it from a ...
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In mechanics, is shock really better expressed as jerk instead of acceleration?

Some expensive electronics or mechanical devices are designed to be shock-resistant. However, the manufacturers often market the level of shock-resistance in units of g-force (I know g-force is really ...
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2answers
994 views

Effect on length of day as the polar ice caps melt

If the polar ice caps of the earth melt, how will the length of the day be affected?
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6answers
920 views

Why does the Earth rotate? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Why does every thing spin? So why would the Earth, or any planet for that matter, rotate along an axis? I know of no force which could come into play here, so i assume ...
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2answers
682 views

Does a force really act on a body during a collision?

Consider two bodies A(black) and B(red) having equal mass. A is moving at a constant speed towards B, which is stationary. At certain point of time, they collide elastically, $\therefore u_{A}=v_{B}$ ...
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1answer
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Use the relative velocity formula to find v2f in terms of v1f?

Q: A $0.150\text{ kg}$ glider is moving to the right ($+x$) on a frictionless, horizontal air track with a speed of $0.80\text{ m/s}$. It has an elastic collision with a $0.300\text{ kg}$ ...
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2answers
97 views

Kinetics energy with different reference frame (a fighter plane shoots a bullet)?

Let say a plane flights at 1km/s, shoots a 2kg projectile at 1km/s, so to the Earth, the projectile flights at 2km/s with 2*2*2/2 = 4MJ. The same gun when fixed on Earth, shoots the same 2kg ...
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2answers
910 views

Why does friction play the role of centripetal force during the turning of a car?

What makes frictional force the centripetal force of a car turning along a curve? As friction is the opposing force and acts anti-parallel so there is no component of frictional force towards the ...
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1answer
79 views

Moments of vibrating string

I have to calculate first 10 moments for vibrating string with damping, but I don't know how to do it. I read about moments and in definition they mention linear system $$x'=Ax+Bu, \qquad y=Cx$$ with ...
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2answers
621 views

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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2answers
489 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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2answers
432 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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997 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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2answers
7k 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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3answers
2k views

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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3answers
230 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
1k 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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1answer
629 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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2answers
280 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
213 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
677 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
735 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
203 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
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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
597 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
692 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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Period of a simple pendulum accounting for friction

The period of a simple pendulum is $$T=2\pi\sqrt{\ell/g},$$ but no where in there do I see that it accounts for friction. Does it somehow account for friction, and if not, how could you do that?
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1answer
158 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
295 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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2answers
402 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
185 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
658 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
584 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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773 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
602 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
2k 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
124 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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612 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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2answers
848 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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4answers
111 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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2answers
156 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). ...