Peer-Reviewed Journal Details
Mandatory Fields
Fahy, S,O'Riordan, J,O'Sullivan, C,Twomey, P
European Journal of Physics
How reflected wave fronts dynamically establish Hooke's law in a spring
Optional Fields
A simple benchtop experiment in which a moving cart collides with a fixed spring is described. Force-time and force-distance data recorded during the collision display the transit of compression wave fronts through the spring following impact. These data can be used by students to develop a computational model of the dynamics of this simple mass-spring-sensor system using a simple application of the wave equation and thereby develop an intriguing picture of how a spring realizes Hooke's law approximately in this dynamic physical problem.
DOI 10.1088/0143-0807/33/2/417
Grant Details