# Momentum: A Crash Lesson

Recommended for Middle School through High School.

## Introduction

An object’s momentum depends on both its mass and its velocity. Momentum can be expressed by the formula

where *p* = momentum (in g•m/s), *m* = mass (in g), and *v* = velocity (in m/s). Momentum is an important factor in analyzing collisions, especially those of automobiles. In this experiment, you will study the relationship between a car’s momentum and the distance it pushes an object during a collision. You will use a balance or spring scale to measure the car’s mass (*m*) and a computerinterfaced Motion Detector to measure its velocity (*v*). You will then calculate momentum (*p*) using the formula given above.

## Objectives

In this experiment, you will

- Measure velocity.
- Measure mass.
- Calculate momentum.
- Graph data.
- Make conclusions about momentum.

## Sensors and Equipment

This experiment features the following Vernier sensors and equipment.

### Option 1

### Option 2

### Additional Requirements

You may also need an interface and software for data collection. What do I need for data collection?

## Standards Correlations

See all standards correlations for *Physical Science with Vernier* »