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Old Apr 15th 2009, 12:42 PM   #1
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elastic collision

I missed a day of class and can't figure out how to do this problem. Any explanations would help me out greatly.

A proton (atomic mass 1 u) with a speed of 500 m/s collides elastically with another proton at rest. The original proton is scattered at 60 degrees from its original direction. What are the speeds of the two particles after the collision?
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Old Apr 15th 2009, 11:47 PM   #2
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This is a 2-D problem for conservation of momentum
Take the direction the proton travels as positive x-direction and perpendicular to x as y direction

One important fact you have to notice is that when two objects of same masses collide with each other, their angle between their new travelling directions is 90 degrees
Then by
$\displaystyle
m_1u_1 + m_2u_2=m_1v_1+m_2v_2$
In x-direction
$\displaystyle 1(500)+1(0)=1cos60^ov_1 + 1cos30^ov_2$
In y-direction
$\displaystyle 1(0)+1(0)=1sin60^ov_1 - 1sin30^ov_2$
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