A 10.1-g bullet is fired into a stationary block of wood having mass m = 4.92 kg. The bullet imbeds into the block. The speed of the bullet-plus-wood combination immediately after the collision is 0.597 m/s. What was the original speed of the bullet? (Express your answer with four significant figures.)

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A 10.1-g bullet is fired into a stationary block of wood having mass m = 4.92 kg. The bullet imbeds into the block. The speed of the bullet-plus-wood combination immediately after the collision is 0.597 m/s. What was the original speed of the bullet? (Express your answer with four significant figures.)

asked Oct 23, 2011 in Physics by kirby ~Expert~ (3,020 points)
    

1 Answer

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Best answer
This problem can be solved using the conservation of momentum, which states that final moment = initial momentum.  (keep in mind that momentum=mass*velocity)

Start off by writing down your variables: m1= 10.1g=0.0101kg,  m2=2.92kg, v1=?, v2=0.597m/s.

Using the conservation of momentum we get(mass 2 is combined mass of the 2 b/c question states they stick together):

m1*v1=(m1+m2)*v2

rearrange to get: v2=(m1+m2)*v2/m1
answered Jan 3, 2012 by pokemonmaster ~Expert~ (3,856 points)
selected Jan 3, 2012 by kirby

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