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In addition to the revision notes for Law of Conservation of Momentum and Kinetic Energy on this page, you can also access the following Centre of Mass and Linear Momentum learning resources for Law of Conservation of Momentum and Kinetic Energy
|6.2||Law of Conservation of Momentum and Kinetic Energy|
In these revision notes for Law of Conservation of Momentum and Kinetic Energy, we cover the following key points:
The Law of Conservation of Momentum for two colliding objects says that:
"The total momentum prior to the impact for two objects involved in a collision process is always equal to their total momentum after the impact, regardless the type of collision."
The mathematical expression of the Law of Conservation of Momentum for two objects (1) and (2) colliding elastically, is
where m1 and m2 are the objects' masses, v01 and v02 are their respective initial velocities prior to collision and v1 and v2 are their velocities after the collision.
When the collision is inelastic, the Law of Conservation of Momentum is written as
where v⃗ is the common velocity of the two objects after the collision as they move together.
As for kinetic energy, it is conserved only in perfectly elastic collisions. The equation that represents mathematically the Law of Conservation of Kinetic Energy is
The two abovementioned laws are very fundamental in mechanics and they are known as the "Laws of Conservation".
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