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Using The Laws Of Physics To Decrease Car Collisions

1719 words - 7 pages

Every year, thousands of people lose their lives in car crashes. There are many factors that come into play when a car collision occurs, however only one factor stays constant throughout every single collision, and that is the laws of physics. The laws of physics are the fundamental base of understanding the world we live in, but unfortunately many people seem to be completely oblivious to them. A lot of the time, we try to deny our ignorance to physics but usually end up proving the opposite. For example, how believable is it that someone could have any knowledge of the physics in cars and have a pet and their lap while driving? Or even worse; a child sitting in the front seat not strapped to a seat belt. These are all situations that take place and spark questions and conversations about how people think, however, the real focus should be on why the laws of physics are important to the “era of the automobiles”. Every year people die in car crashes, but every year, that number decreases. With every year that passes by, we gain more knowledge about how to prevent those life-taking events from taking place, and we do that through accident reconstruction specialists. These are the people that dedicate their hard work and knowledge of physics and mechanics to be able to develop the safest environment possible within a car, in hopes of decreasing the amount of damage done during a collision. The results that the accident reconstruction specialists produce are very helpful for the manufacturers and engineers that are designing the new systems in cars. Now, to further elaborate on the physics behind car crashes, it all starts with newtons laws.

Newton’s laws and forces in a car crash:
Usually, when speaking about a car crash or a collision of any kind, the basic physics concepts involved in it are newton’s laws. Newton’s first law states that an object in motion stays in straight line motion unless acted upon by an external force. This plays into the idea of a car crash when for example, a car is going through a roundabout faster than the speed limit is, it could either not stay on track and hit the curb or the the driver will oversteer and the car will go in a straight line, right through the roundabout. Newtons second law states that when a net force acts on an object, it is the equivalent to its mass times its acceleration (F = ma). This plays into the idea of a car crash when for example, a large car is travelling at some velocity (x), and a smaller car going at some velocity (x), if the two cars were to collide there would be a greater force exerted by the larger car. Therefore, the smaller car would need better “caging” to protect the driver. Newton's third law states that for every actions there is an equal in magnitude but opposite in direction reaction. This law comes into play in any kind of collision, and its also one of the factors that dictates the effects and outcomes of the collision, because the outcomes depends on the characteristics...

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