Monday, October 25, 2010

Math ain't dum

Here's an example of a geek saving the day.

So I read the above article and my first thought was that I should share it.

Not long ago I was having a conversation with my mom about this very thing - conservation of momentum. In short, in reference to the article, by Pole's vehicle to collide into the rear of his, while continuing to drive in the same direction, Innes's minivan absorbed some of the momentum from the pickup, until both were traveling at the same speed, creating a system of sorts - kind of like a train. Then, with the minivan now in charge, Innes's could then brake for both vehicles, thus saving the lives of many.

This is the same rule of physics, by the way, that explains why, in two-car collisions, the vehicle with the slower momentum, and its passengers, bear the brunt of total energy in the "system" of the crash. My brother learned this first-hand a couple of years ago; he was at a complete stop at a police roadblock and was rear-ended by a car going at least 50 mph. His car was totaled, and his back permanently damaged, while the offending vehicle and its driver were much less affected. When visualizing the physics of it, exchange the image of the lady's vehicle with that of a train. Obviously, the auto with the highest momentum has the most energy; when it collided with his car, the energy traveled through his car at a huge rate, treating the car like a spring. Like a spring, some energy pushed back at her car, causing it to rebound a little, which likely saved his life.

Anyway, I have nothing profound to say about it all. I really just wanted to share that article.

Now re-instigating Internet silence.