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A 20 kg cart traveling to the right at 12 m/s collides head on with a 10 kg cart traveling 6 m/s to the left. After the collision, the 10 kg cart is traveling 10 m/s to the right. A) What is the velocity of the 20 kg cart after the collision? b) Determine whether or not the collision is elastic. C) Are the answers in A & B reasonable.
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Added Thu, 30 Jul '15
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Part A)

Apply conservation of momentum

mv + mv = mv + ma

20(-12) + (10)(6) = 20(v) + 10(-10)

v = -4 m/s

Meaning it will be traveling 4 m/s to the right

Part B)

Initial KE = .5(20)(12)2 + (.5)(10)(6)2 = 1620 J

Final KE = (.5)(20)(4)2 + (.5)(10)(10)2 = 660 J

The collision is NOT elastic since the KE is not conserved.

Part C)

Yes, everything is reasonable.
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