As many of us know Iron Man 3 has made its debet earlier this month and has many new and exciting aspects of physics in it. One scene in the movie is of Tony Stark's house being blown up by helicopters. The really exciting part isn't the house bursting into flames, but when Tony is being dragged down to the ocean floor by debre from the house. This got me thinking, would Tony and the Iron Man suit sink on its own or stay afloat?
In order to stay afloat or have neutral bouyancy, the suit would have to have a density of at least 1 because that is the desity of water. If the desity of an object is exactly 1 it will be neutral in bouyancy. This means that the object will not sink nor float unless acted on by an outside force. With a density of more than 1 the object will sink. The greater the density the more eager the object will be to sink to the bottom. The same goes for densities less than 1.
Being made of different types of alloys and metal the Iron Man suit will most deffinetly have a desity of more than one. So on its own with Tony in it, he would sink to the bottom....
However this could be overcome with ballast tanks. By regulating the amount of water in these tanks the density of the object with the tanks changes. This is how submarines submerge and return back to the top. Knowing the limitless boundries of Tony Stark the capabilities of Iron Man could very well include submersion.
I've always been a big fan of the Marvel comic Iron Man. Its so cool how Tony Stark can put his extremely advanced suit on and do amazing things like save the world. But with all of these amazing feats, how much of the Iron Man suit actually follow the laws of physics, and more importantly, how does he fly? Through research I have found the answers to these questions.
The idea of the Iron Man suit is very much plausible and somewhat realistic. The problem, however, is the technology available to us now. It's just not at the point in its development where it will allow for the abilities displayed by Tony Stark to be a reality. In order for Iron Man to achieve flight he uses jet boots and repulsor rays. The jet boots provide most if not all of the thrust required to propel him at super sonic speeds. The repulsor rays located in the palms of the hands provide stability along with deploy-able flaps located in various parts of the suit. These tools very plausible in today's world. The problem however is the energy required for sustained flight. Not only does flying about cost a considerable amount of energy but so does the suit itself. The computer that that Stark talks to constantly has to be using tons of power along with the energy required for the suit to move. It has been said that a real life version of the Iron Man suit would require more energy than a nuclear power plant can produce. And the technologies of today are definitely not at that level of complexity and efficiency.
With all that said, the force required to give lift to a several hundred pound object would be considerable. With the equation F=MA we know that in order to accelerate the object the force would have to be stronger. And as flight progressed the acceleration would still have to be continues if not stronger. Along with this simply equation comes another law of physics; the conservation of energy. No energy can be made or destroyed. So, going back to the energy consumption of the suit shows that it requires massive amounts of energy. And not enough energy an be produced (converted) for the suit to use.
Swimming can be used in a variety of ways. Some use it for recreation while others use it for sport and competition. Regardless of how it is used there are many forms of physics that are used.
The video below demonstrates and explains the various aspects of physics in swimming...
With this video you can see all the different aspects of physics ( acceleration momentum, force, velocity and Newtons Laws of Motion, as well as drag coefficients) that are involved in the simple act of swimming.
Acceleration is used when starting from any initial speed and increasing or decreasing speed... not just from diving as shown in the video.
Momentum is used all the time while you are swimming. When you are not trying to accelerate in any way your momentum makes it easier to stay at a constant speed.
Force can be very useful in all motions of swimming. Every movement needs a force to allow it to happen...
All of Newtons Laws of Motions also come into play. This is what makes swimming the way it is...
Drag comes into play more with competitive swimming. Drag is what holds you back as you swim. When swimming, the water must be "moved" out of the way. This is what keeps you from swimming extremely fast. The faster you swim the quicker the water must be moved and the greater the drag.
There are a lot of things that go into mountain biking. Anyone can demonstrate physics of a bicycle just by riding one, even on straight and level ground. The gyroscopic action of the wheels can help keep you balanced while riding. But more important to a mountain biker physics can keep you from doing something too stupid.
There are different styles of mountain biking, but the one I am going to focus on is downhill mountain biking. This style of biking consists of riding downhill as the title suggests, with the help of gravity. That is the main reason why it can be dangerous. With gravity always trying to make you travel faster and faster it can be difficult to stay in control of the bike. But with the advantage of gravity many things can also be done that can't normally be achieved with out it.
For example, jumping long distances can be done much easier because of the increased momentum from descending. Better yet, the taller the mountain, the more speed and momentum that is possible to gain. This is a direct result of how high the starting point is from the base and potential energy. The higher you are the longer gravity will have to accelerate you down the mountain. So there is a potential for you to be going a maximum velocity.
Although there are many other uses of physics in understanding how riding a bike works and what can be done with it, this I felt was a more interesting topic. Bikes and kinematics aren't thought of going together a lot.
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