Catch/Overtake Problems Video Lessons

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Problem: The Starship Enterprise returns from warp drive to ordinary space with a forward speed of 56 km/s . To the crews great surprise, a Klingon ship is 130 km directly ahead, traveling in the same direction at a mere 26 km/s . Without evasive action, the Enterprise will overtake and collide with the Klingons in just about 4.3 s . The Enterprises computers react instantly to brake the ship.What magnitude acceleration does the Enterprise need to just barely avoid a collision with the Klingon ship? Assume the acceleration is constant. Hint: Draw a position-versus-time graph showing the motions of both the Enterprise and the Klingon ship. Let x0 = 0 km be the location of the Enterprise as it returns from warp drive. How do you show graphically the situation in which the collision is "barely avoided"? Once you decide what it looks like graphically, express that situation mathematically.

Problem Details

The Starship Enterprise returns from warp drive to ordinary space with a forward speed of 56 km/s . To the crews great surprise, a Klingon ship is 130 km directly ahead, traveling in the same direction at a mere 26 km/s . Without evasive action, the Enterprise will overtake and collide with the Klingons in just about 4.3 s . The Enterprises computers react instantly to brake the ship.

What magnitude acceleration does the Enterprise need to just barely avoid a collision with the Klingon ship? Assume the acceleration is constant.
Hint: Draw a position-versus-time graph showing the motions of both the Enterprise and the Klingon ship. Let x0 = 0 km be the location of the Enterprise as it returns from warp drive. How do you show graphically the situation in which the collision is "barely avoided"? Once you decide what it looks like graphically, express that situation mathematically.

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