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Math Help - Problem Involving Motion

  1. #1
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    Problem Involving Motion

    A canister is dropped from a helicopter hovering 500m above the ground. Unfortuantly its parachute does not deploy. It has been designed to withstand an impact velocity of 100m/s. Will it burst or not?

    Not sure what to do.
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  2. #2
    Senior Member Spec's Avatar
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    Check if mgh\leq\frac{mv^2}{2} where mgh is the potential energy at the drop point and with the ground as zero. Assuming my understanding of impact velocity in this question is correct.
    Last edited by Spec; May 19th 2009 at 08:30 PM.
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  3. #3
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    No idea how to use that
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  4. #4
    Senior Member Spec's Avatar
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    Just plug in the values of the variables into the inequality and see if it holds.

    h=500 (height)
    v=100 (velocity)
    g=9.8 (standard gravity)

    m > 0 so you can just divide it out.

    9.8 \cdot 500 \leq 10 \cdot 500 so it will not burst.

    This is not exactly an answer to a calculus question, so I don't think I have interpreted the impact velocity correctly.
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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dickson View Post
    A canister is dropped from a helicopter hovering 500m above the ground. Unfortuantly its parachute does not deploy. It has been designed to withstand an impact velocity of 100m/s. Will it burst or not?

    Not sure what to do.
    For simple equation of motion without air resistance, use:

    v^2 = U^2 + 2*a*s

    v^2 = 0 + (2*9.8*500)

    v^2 = 9800

    v = sqrt (9800) = 98.99 m/s

    Pretty close then!

    If you factor in air resistance, the velocity at impact will be slower
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