Physics Work and Energy problem involving springs?

The problem states: You are playing a game of pinball when the ball starts bouncing back and forth between two springs.You watch the ball bounce back and forth for a while and wonder how fast the ball is moving. You notice that the maximum compression of one spring is 16 cm. When you look up the machine specifications, you find that the spring constant of that spring is 130 N/m and that the mass of the ball is 200 g. What is the speed of the ball?

The answer is 4.08 m/s

How do I go about solving this problem? Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated!

1 Answer

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  • Jim
    Lv 7
    4 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    Spring Potential Energy (SPE) = 1/2kx² = (0.5)(130)(0.16)² = 1.664 J

    KE of ball = 1/2mV²

    If there is 100% transference of energy from spring to ball then

    KE = SPE

    (0.5)(0.200)V² = 1.664

    V² = 16.64

    V = 4.079 ≈ 4.08 m/s ANS

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