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A small steel ball bearing with a mass of 24 g is on a short compressed spring. When aimed vertically and suddenly released, the spring sends the bearing to a height of 1.23 m. Calculate the horizontal distance the ball will travel if the same spring is aimed 27° from the horizontal.

For this problem, does the mass need to be considered? Or do I just ignore the mass and solve for the velocities?

  • Physics -

    Yes, the mass has to be considered. The spring is operating against gravitational forces in the vertical.

    energy in spring= massball*g*height

    because it is short, you can ignore the change in GPE when the spring is compressed.
    If that is so, then
    1/2mv^2=mgh and you are right, mass divides out.
    v initial= sqrt (2gh)
    this is the same v initial when launched at any other angle.

  • Physics -

    Once I then have the initial vel., how can I go about getting the horizintal distance? Don't I need time?

  • Physics -


    initial vertical velocity= v*sinTheta

    That will lead to time in air.

  • Physics -

    Ahh ok I got it now.

    Thanks. :)

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