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Introduction:

Rolling and sliding are two motion related to the objects falling from inclined plane of some

height. These are the much more common motion of objects falling from the inclined surface

assuming a frictionless contact area between the contacting bodies. There practically applications

are widely used in everyday life. In problem it is asked to identify that two wheel are rolling

down the hill which one will hit the bottom first. The data for the two wheels is given by,

 Weight of rubber wheels = 150 grams

i. Thickness of Solid disk = 1 cm

ii. Ring size = 1 cm *1 cm

These two balls are allowed to move from inclined plane and we know that when a body is

allowed to slide from inclined surface then the rotating object has a kinetic energy which is

expressed by the formula below consisting of translational and rotational motion,

½*m*V2 + ½*I*ω2 (1)

As we know when there is a fall in potential energy there is increase in kinetic energy or in other

words,

P.E = K.E

For the both wheels the potential energy will be same as they are falling from the same height

and kinetic energy is the sum of translational and rotational kinetic energy. But solid disk will

roll down the hill and as the ring is not circular so it is impossible for ring with square cross

section to roll down the hill. So the angular velocity of the ring is zero as and it will have only

kinetic energy. Now it is to investigate which one will hit the bottom first.
 Equation for total kinetic energy = ½*m*V2 + ½*I*ω2

As the angular velocity is zero so the 2nd term of the equation becomes zero so the kinetic energy

of the ring,

 Kinetic energy of ring with square cross section = ½*m*V2

Kinetic energy of solid disk = ½*m*V2 + ½*I*ω2

Observation:

For ring with square cross-section

Net Force acting on the ring is the only force acting in the x direction is a component of

gravitational force,

Fnet-x = mgSinϴ = m*ax

ax = g*Sinϴ
And the sliding velocity of the ring is calculated as,

V = (2*g*h)1/2

Total kinetic energy = ½*m*V2 + ½*I*ω2

=1/2*m*(((2*g*h)1/2)2 + 0

= m*g*h

For solid disk:

Moment of inertia = ½*m*r2

Angular velocity = ω = v/r

Work done is zero as the disk start from the rest position,

W=0

= ½*m*V2 + ½*I*ω2 – mgh

Putting the value of angular velocity,


0 = ½*m*V2 + ½*½*m*r2*(v/r)2 - mgh

Solving for velocity

4
V = √(3 𝑔ℎ)

Putting the values in equation 1

K.E = ½*m*V2 + ½*I*ω2

4
= ½*m*(√(3 𝑔ℎ))2 +1/2*½*m*r2*(v/r)2

= (0.67*m*g*h) + (0.25*m*v2)

For Hollow tube of circular cross section:

Moment of inertia = m*r2

Angular velocity = ω = v/r

Work done is zero as the disk start from the rest position,

W=0

= ½*m*V2 + ½*I*ω2 – mgh

Putting the value of angular velocity,

0 = ½*m*V2 + ½*m*r2*(v/r)2 - mgh

Solving for velocity


V = √𝑔ℎ

Putting the values in equation 1

K.E = ½*m*V2 + ½*I*ω2

= ½*m(√𝑔ℎ )2 +1/2*m*r2*(v/r)2

= (0.5*m*g*h) + (0.5*m*v2)

Calculating result assuming the unit height

Assuming value of h = 1 m

Calculation & Results:

Item H (m) V (m/sec) K.E

Ring 1 4.427 9.8*m

Solid disk 1 3.614 9.8*m

Hollow tube 1 3.13 9.8*m

Where “m” is the mass of the body

During the calculation above it was assumed that the plane is frictionless i.e. no friction between

the two contacting surfaces.

Discussion/conclusion:
From the above observation and calculation it is clear that the object will reach at the bottom first which

has higher velocity. If all the three cases have the same mass than kinetic energy is the same for all cases

only velocity is different. The wheels which will hit the bottom of the hill first are in the order of,

 Ring with square cross section

 Solid disk

 Hollow tube

From the above three wheels ring with square cross section will hit the bottom first.