1. Imagine a place in the cosmos far from all gravitational and frictional influences. Suppose that you visit that place (just suppose) and throw a rock. The rock will
a. gradually stop.
b. continue in motion in the same direction at constant speed.
According to Newton's first law, the rock will continue in motion in the same direction at constant speed.
2. A 2-kg object is moving horizontally with a speed of 4 m/s. How much net force is required to keep the object moving at this speed and in this direction? Answer: 0 N
An object in motion will maintain its state of motion. The presence of an unbalanced force changes the velocity of the object.
3. Mac and Tosh are arguing in the cafeteria. Mac says that if he flings the Jell-O with a greater speed it will have a greater inertia. Tosh argues that inertia does not depend upon speed, but rather upon mass. Who do you agree with? Explain why.
Tosh is correct. Inertia is that quantity which depends solely upon mass. The more mass, the more inertia. Momentum is another quantity in Physics which depends on both mass and speed. Momentum will be discussed in a later unit.
4. Supposing you were in space in a weightless environment, would it require a force to set an object in motion? Absolutely yes!
Even in space objects have mass. And if they have mass, they have inertia. That is, an object in space resists changes in its state of motion. A force must be applied to set a stationary object in motion. Newton's laws rule - everywhere!
5. Fred spends most Sunday afternoons at rest on the sofa, watching pro football games and consuming large quantities of food. What effect (if any) does this practice have upon his inertia? Explain.
Fred's inertia will increase! Fred will increase his mass if he makes a habit of this. And if his mass increases, then his inertia increases.
6. If the forces acting upon an object are balanced, then the object
a. must not be moving.
b. must be moving with a constant velocity.
c. must not be accelerating.
d. none of these
The answer could be A (but does not have to be A) and it could be B (but does not have to be B). An object having balanced forces definitely cannot be accelerating. This means that it could be at rest and staying at rest (one option) or could be in motion at constant velocity (a second option). Either way, it definitely is not accelerating - choice C of your four choices.
7. Determine the accelerations that result when a 12-N net force is applied to a 3-kg object and then to a 6-kg object.
A 3-kg object experiences an acceleration of 4 m/s/s. A 6-kg object experiences an acceleration of 2 m/s/s.
8. A net force of 15 N is exerted on an encyclopedia to cause it to accelerate at a rate of 5 m/s2. Determine the mass of the encyclopedia.
Use Fnet= m * a with Fnet = 15 N and a = 5 m/s/s.
So (15 N) = (m)*(5 m/s/s) And m = 3.0 kg
9. Suppose that a sled is accelerating at a rate of 2 m/s2. If the net force is tripled and the mass is doubled, then what is the new acceleration of the sled? Answer: 3 m/s/s
The original value of 2 m/s/s must be multiplied by 3 (since a and F are directly proportional) and divided by 2 (since a and m are inversely proportional)
10. Suppose that a sled is accelerating at a rate of 2 m/s2. If the net force is tripled and the mass is halved, then what is the new acceleration of the sled? Answer: 12 m/s/s
The original value of 2 m/s/s must be multiplied by 3 (since a and F are directly proportional) and divided by 1/2 (since a and m are inversely proportional)
11. While driving down the road, a firefly strikes the windshield of a bus and makes a quite obvious mess in front of the face of the driver. This is a clear case of Newton's third law of motion. The firefly hit the bus and the bus hits the firefly. Which of the two forces is greater: the force on the firefly or the force on the bus?
Trick Question! Each force is the same size. For every action, there is an equal ... (equal!). The fact that the firefly splatters only means that with its smaller mass, it is less able to withstand the larger acceleration resulting from the interaction. Besides, fireflies have guts and bug guts have a tendency to be splatterable. Windshields don't have guts. There you have it.
12. For years, space travel was believed to be impossible because there was nothing that rockets could push off of in space in order to provide the propulsion necessary to accelerate. This inability of a rocket to provide propulsion is because ...
a. ... space is void of air so the rockets have nothing to push off of.
b. ... gravity is absent in space.
c. ... space is void of air and so there is no air resistance in space.
d. ... nonsense! Rockets do accelerate in space and have been able to do so for a long time.
It is a common misconception that rockets are unable to accelerate in space. The fact is that rockets do accelerate. There is indeed nothing for rockets to push off of in space - at least nothing which is external to the rocket. But that's no problem for rockets. Rockets are able to accelerate due to the fact that they burn fuel and push the exhaust gases in a direction opposite the direction which they wish to accelerate.
13. Many people are familiar with the fact that a rifle recoils when fired. This recoil is the result of action-reaction force pairs. A gunpowder explosion creates hot gases that expand outward allowing the rifle to push forward on the bullet. Consistent with Newton's third law of motion, the bullet pushes backwards upon the rifle. The acceleration of the recoiling rifle is ...
a. greater than the acceleration of the bullet. b. smaller than the acceleration of the bullet.
c. the same size as the acceleration of the bullet.
The force on the rifle equals the force on the bullet. Yet, acceleration depends on both force and mass. The bullet has a greater acceleration due to the fact that it has a smaller mass. Remember: acceleration and mass are inversely proportional.