Re: Physics Question

From: Jerome (
Date: Thu Feb 21 2002 - 17:19:52 MST

Good point, Dave. And yes, it was remarkably painful.

Supposing that the speed of the van when it struck me could be specified (I
understand that we do not have sufficient data to derive this speed), what
could you say then? Suppose, for example, that the van was moving at, say,
10 mph. How would the result change if it were moving at, say 20 mph? 30 mph?


At 03:05 PM 2/21/02 -0500, you wrote:
>Jerome <> wrote:
> >
> > The van I am climbing out of is struck from behind by a 4000 pound car
> > traveling at, say 35 miles per hour. The car striking the van comes to
> > rest, imparting it's energy to the van, which quickly comes up to a high
> > (~35 mph?) speed.
>The key word is "quickly". Since it doesn't happen instantaneously,
>think the door frame is moving substantially slower than 35 mph when
>it hits your back.
> > My physics question is: how does one characterize the energy transfer that
> > occurred here?
>Painful? :-)
> > I'm especially interested in being able to say how much
> > energy was in the blow that I received.
>Sorry, I really have no idea how to figure the acceleration of the van
>caused by the impact.

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