Two lumps of clay approach each other from opposite directions and collide head on inelastically, combing into one large lump after they collide. the first lump has a mass of 0.140kg and has a speed of 3.50 m/s before the Collision. the second lump has a mass of 0.620kg and has a speed of 4.81 m/s before the collison in a direction opposite that of the first lump. what velocity does the combined lump have after the collision?
Answer: To start, since we know they collide inelastically, we can use the equation:
m1 * v1i + m2 * v2i = (m1 + m2) vf
Solving for vf (velocity final),
(m1 * v1i + m2 * v2i) / (m1 + m2) = vf
Substituting known values,
(.14 * 3.5 + .62 * -4.81) / (.14 + .62) = vf
vf = -3.28
The negative means m2 is going the other way, and the solution means that the final mass is going in the direction of m2.