Problem 267/Reverse engineering
Now here’s a problem everyone can get a handle on.
Heightened security isn’t the only thing causing long lines at airports these days. At Podunk County Field, baggage inspectors have taken to running their scanners at low speed to avoid exertion. An alert coffee vendor, however, discovered their scheme and, at night, reversed the speed controls on all the machines. The next day, with conveyors in overdrive, suitcases were flying everywhere. One bag shot clear across the ticket counter barely missing several agents. If the bag left the conveyor at a velocity of 90 ft/sec, how high up the wall did it hit? For extra credit, how far does the bag travel? Assumptions: the suitcase weighs 65 lb and can be treated as a rigid mass of uniform density; the conveyor is 5 ft above and parallel to the floor; the wall is 22 ft from the end of the conveyor; the suitcase loses half its kinetic energy breaking through the wall; air resistance is negligible.
Solution to problem 266 For goodness snake, March 2003