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Are momentum and kinetic energy the same thing?
- John Doe (age 99)
John- I've followed your work in many areas, especially the law, and am
a big fan. It's nice to see that you're still taking an active interest
in science at your advanced age.
Momentum and kinetic energy are entirely different things. Momentum
is a VECTOR (points in some direction) with dimensions
mass*length/time. Kinetic energy is a SCALAR (plain number) with
There was some confusion a few hundred years ago about which of
these was a better 'measure of motion'. We actually need both of them
to get useful descriptions of most events.
Give our regards to Jane.
(published on 10/22/2007)
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