Conservation of Momentum - 2 Mass Elastic Collision

Set the starting values :

           M1 (left) (kg) =    
           M2 (right) (kg) =    
           Initial V1 =    
           Initial V2 =    

  * If you manually change values ...

There are two masses that can collide elastically - both momentum AND kinetic energy are conserved. You can specify the initial velocities and masses for each mass. (The arrow buttons near the initial values will double or half the values. If you manually change a value {not using the arrows}, click the UPDATE button.)

Set both masses equal, and M2 at rest. How does the final velocity of M2 compare tot he intial velocity of M1? Answer : The same! (The two masses "trade" momenta.)

With unequal masses, and one mass at rest, can the colliding mass ever stop after the collsion? Answer : No, if the colliding mass is bigger, it will go in the same direction as the hit mass .. if it is smaller, it will bounce back.

With one mass at rest, as the mass of the incoming mass increases, how do the final velocities of each mass relate to the initial velocity of the incoming mass? Answer : As the incoming mass gets bigger .. it's velocity stays about the same {slightly less}, and the other mass's velocity will start to approach twice the initial velocity!

Set both masses equal, and set the masses moving toward each other but with different velocities. How do the final velocities compare to the initial velocities? Answer : The two masses trade velocities (essentially they trade momentum!)

Note:Just after the collision, depending on the values chosen, there may be some spurious velocity values (an artifact of the physlet calculations) - after the next time step, the expected final velocities will be the expected constant values.

Related Physlets :
       Conservation of Momentum - Energy to Separate (momenta1)
       Setting the Explosion energy between two masses (momenta2e)
       Conservation of Momentum - 2 Mass Elastic Collision (momenta3)
       Conservation of Momentum - 2 Mass Inelastic Collision (momenta3c)
       Conservation of Momentum - 2 Mass Inelastic Collision - Center of Mass Technique (momenta4)

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