Video: Watch this demo
Description: This demonstration visually shows the transfer of momentum between two objects.
- Tennis Ball
- Lump of Putty/Clay
- (Optional) You may stand on something to get extra height.
- Drop the basketball alone. Note about how high it goes. Do the same for the tennis ball.
- Position the tennis ball directly on top of the basketball and release them both at the same time.
- Note that the tennis ball goes much higher, because most of the momentum from the basketball is transferred to the tennis ball.
- Drop the lump of clay, and show that it does not bounce at all.
- Position the lump of clay directly on top of the basketball and release them both at the same time.
- Note that the lump of clay goes flying this time due to the transfer of momentum. This may be counter intuitive to some students.
Caution: Try and do this away from students in case the tennis ball does not bounce up vertically.