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Clay Shooting



Over spring break I was able to go down to Jacksonville, Florida to visit my friend Aaron. While I was there we decided to go clay shooting at a shooting range with his dad's shotgun. It was both helpful and interesting to understand a little bit about how the physics if the bullets when they shot. First off, it is helpful to know that the velocity of the bullets once shot out, always stay the same horizontally. Neglecting air resistance, the velocity should stay exactly the same. However gravity also pulls down on the bullet at 9.81 m/s, so after a certain distance, the bullet will eventually hit the ground. One interesting discovery that has been made because of this reality, is that if you were to shoot a bullet and drop a bullet from the same height at the same time, theoretically they should hit the ground at the same time. Even though one is shot fast horizontally strait, they still have the same amount of force pulling the downwards so they should hit the ground instantaneously. There is also a lot of physics involved in the fun part, which is shooting the clay the disks or pigeons. If you are able to aim well enough and hit the pigeon you can see it explode in the air. This happens because the bullets exert an extremely strong force on the disk, which it then exerted back causing it to break. Shooting was a lot of fun and I definitely would like to try it again. Being able to understand the physics made it more understandable and much more fun!


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