Periodic Motion TBR #1 Question

glam407

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Apr 18, 2010
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  1. Pre-Medical
    Question: If at the lowest point of its arc Mass M has a velocity of ten meters per second, then at how many points in time during the period of one complete cycle does the pendulum have a speed of five meters per second?

    The answer is 4 times

    And the explanation says it goes back and forth (once each time) = 2 total times, and there are two points where there are 5 m/s ....but I don't understand how there are two points where it's 5 m/s?
     

    Jepstein30

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    Jun 29, 2011
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    1. Medical Student
      Question: If at the lowest point of its arc Mass M has a velocity of ten meters per second, then at how many points in time during the period of one complete cycle does the pendulum have a speed of five meters per second?

      The answer is 4 times

      And the explanation says it goes back and forth (once each time) = 2 total times, and there are two points where there are 5 m/s ....but I don't understand how there are two points where it's 5 m/s?

      It is going 10 m/s at the bottom of the arc. We also know it is swinging back and forth like a pendulum. This means that at the top of its arc, it reverses direction. For it to reverse direction, there needs to be one moment in there with velocity of 0. So it's going from 10 m/s to 0 m/s, must be 5 m/s at some point. Likewise, as it comes from the top of the arc back to the bottom, it is also going from 0 to 10 m/s.. again passing 5 m/s for some split second.

      For one complete cycle: Start at the top of the left arc:
      0 to 10 on the way down
      10 to 0 on the way up to the right
      0 to 10 on the way down
      10 to 0 on the way up to the left

      One cycle, 4 times passing 5 m/s. For some minute time period, the mass has to be moving at 5 m/s.

      EDIT: Just realized this question is actually pretty good. If you notice, it is asking for SPEED, not velocity. If it were asking for velocity, only twice would it hit 5 m/s (the other two would be -5 m/s) but since it is asking for speed, direction doesn't matter.
       

      Ibn Alnafis MD

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        The big thing here is distinguishing between points in space and points in time in a single cycle.

        Exactly.

        I missed this question because I overlooked "the point in time" and though there are only two points in space at which the pendulum speed is 5 m/s.
         
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