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Middle School

Forces and Interactions

Inelastic Collisions with Different Masses

Lesson Description:

An object in motion tends to remain in motion. A stationary object will remain in place unless something acts on it. These are observations you can make every day. airtrack In this experiment you will investigate what happens when a moving object runs into a stationary object of the same mass. We have arranged for the two objects to stick together. Consider what you would expect to happen before you begin taking data. For example, in which direction will the stuck-together objects move? Will they move faster or slower than before the collision? How much faster or slower? You will see an air track with two identical gliders on it. The gliders ride on a cushion of air, which reduces friction considerably. You should click on the top front corner of the left glider when you make your measurements.