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How Far Will Lisa Compress The Spring

Sandra Watson
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A new event has been proposed for the Winter Olympics. An athlete will sprint 100 m, starting from rest, then leap onto a 18 kg bobsled. The person and bobsled will then slide down a 51 m–long ice-covered ramp, sloped at 20 degrees, and into a spring with a carefully calibrated spring constant of 1800 N/m. The athlete who compresses the spring the farthest wins the gold medal. Lisa, whose mass is 39 kg, has been training for this event. She can reach a maximum speed of 8.0 m/s in the 100 m dash. How far will Lisa compress the spring?

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