Posted by RJ on Tuesday, May 26, 2009 at 9:36pm.
Two stunt drivers drive directly toward each other. At time t=0 the two cars are a distance D apart, car 1 is at rest, and car 2 is moving to the left with speed v_0. Car 1 begins to move at t=0, speeding up with a constant acceleration a_x. Car 2 continues to move with a constant velocity.
Find the speed of car 1 just before it collides with car 2.
Note: The correct answer does not depend on the variable: t

Physics  TchrWill, Friday, May 29, 2009 at 11:59am
Two stunt drivers drive directly toward each other. At time t=0 the two cars are a distance D apart, car 1 is at rest, and car 2 is moving to the left with speed Vo. Car 1 begins to move at t=0, speeding up with a constant acceleration Ax. Car 2 continues to move with a constant velocity.
Find the speed of car 1 just before it collides with car 2.
D = the distance between them at t = 0.
V2 = the constant velocity of car 2.
A = the constant acceleration of car 2.
x = the time of travel of car 2 to impact with catr 1.
t = the time of travel to impact.
1t = x/V2 or x = tV2
2D  x = At^2/2
3D  x + x = D = At^2/2 + tV2
4At^2/2 + tV2  D = 0
5At^2 + 2tV2  2D = 0
6Using the quadratic equation,
t = [sqrt(V2^2 + 2DA) V2]/a
7From Vf = Vo + At, the final velocity of car 1 at impact is
Vf1 = sqrt(V2^2 + 2DA)  V2
Example:
D = 1000 miles
V2 = 100 miles/hr
A = 10 miles/hr^2
After a few guesses, x = 732 miles from which t = 7.32 hr, from which (D  x) = 268 miles which should equal AT^2/2 = 10(7.32)^2/2 = 268 miles and Vf = At = 73.2 mph.
Using Vf1 = sqrt(V2^2) + 2DA0)  V2,
Vf1 = sqrt((100^2) 2(1000)10  100 = 73.2mph.
Therefore, Vf1 = sqrt(V2^2 + 2DA)  V2
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