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Q & A: Water balloon

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Most recent answer: 10/22/2007
Q:
If you drop a water balloon at each different floors, are each waterballoons have each different power? I think so. but the question is what does it depends on? You know something like something x something x something to the second power, u know stuffs that looks like scienctific theory
- terry (age 14)
plum grove jr. high, hoffman estates, IL
A:
terry,
You're right the amount of force the water balloons hit with will depend on the height you drop them from. How hard something hits is best described by something we call momentum. Momentum is the mass of an object multiplied by its speed. So the faster an object goes and the more it weighs the harder it will hit. To put this into equations as you asked the speed which the water is traveling at when it hits the ground is the sqaure root of 2 times the height it was dropped from times the gravitational constant g or speed=square root(2*g*height). To get the momentum the balloon has you just multiply that speed by the mass of the water balloon and that should tell you how hard the balloon will hit.
Dan

(published on 10/22/2007)

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