Tuesday
September 2, 2014

Homework Help: problem solving

Posted by lynn on Friday, October 17, 2008 at 5:08pm.

Please help me figure out how to solve this problem I have researched and racked my brain and still no luck.I don't think there is enough information givin.

Problem

In 1054, Chinese astronomers observed the light from a supernova in the night sky. This supernova was the incredibly powerful origin of what is now the Crab Nebula.

Using the velocity of light, devise and execute a strategy for finding out when the supernova actually occurred, relative to when the Chinese astronomers saw the explosion.
I. Understand the Problem

(a) Read the problem statement carefully to be sure you understand what problem you are being asked to solve. Identify the pertinent pieces of information.

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II. Devise a Plan

(b) What are some possible strategies for solving this problem?

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(c) Of the strategies that you listed in step (b), discuss the advantages/disadvantages of each.

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(d) What additional information, if any, is necessary to solve the problem?

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(e) If you listed any items in step (d), identify some possible sources for finding this information.

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(f) To use the algebraic relationship described in the first strategy, you must first express it using variables. Rewrite the algebraic relationship,

Distance = Rate Time

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(g) Although you can use any variable to represent a physical quantity, some variables are better than others. Why do you think that this is the case?

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(h) Use the equation you wrote in step (f) to solve for the variable that represents the rate.

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(i) Use your equation to solve for the variable that you used to represent time.

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(j) Which strategy do you think is best for finding a solution to this problem? Explain your decision.

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III. Carry out the Plan

Devise a third option of your own, or use one of the given strategies to solve the problem. Show your results and explain the methods you used to find the solution.

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IV. Look Back

(k) How effective was the strategy that you chose? If confronted with a similar problem, would you use the same strategy? If not, why not?

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(l) After carrying out your strategy, did you find that the problem solving strategies of mathematics and internet research could be executed independently of one another? Explain.

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(m) If you followed the Hint and researched the measurement taken by Edwin Hubble, how did this information affect your solution and/or approach to the problem?

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(n) Why is it impossible to find a precise answer to the problem, but possible to place a boundary on the possible answers?

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