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Head First Physics by Heather Lang

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Chapter 10. Momentum Conservation: What Newton Did

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No one likes to be a pushover. So far, you’ve learned to deal with objects that are already moving. But what makes them go in the first place? You know that something will move if you push it - but how will it move? In this chapter, you’ll overcome inertia as you get acquainted with some of Newton’s Laws. You’ll also learn about momentum, why it’s conserved, and how you can use it to solve problems.

The pirates be havin’ a spot o’ bother with a ghost ship ...

The pirate captain is being chased across the seas by a ghost ship and needs to make sure it keeps its distance.

His ship’s fitted with some Sieges-R-Us battle cannons. The captain wants to know the maximum range of his cannons - the maximum horizontal distance he can fire a cannonball, and you’ve been called in as the expert.

But the supply of cannonballs is limited at sea - so he won’t actually be able to fire a cannon until you’ve got it all worked out.

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