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Analogy of rotational and translational kinetic energy

Is rotational kinetic energy completely analogous to translational kinetic energy? What, if any, are their differences? Give an example of each type of kinetic energy.

Yes, rotational and translational kinetic energy are exact analogs. They both are the energy of motion involved with the coordinated (non-random) movement of mass relative to some reference frame. The only difference between rotational and translational kinetic energy is that translational is straight line motion while rotational is not. An example of both kinetic and translational kinetic energy is found in a bike tire while being ridden down a bike path. The rotational motion of the tire means it has rotational kinetic energy while the movement of the bike along the path means the tire also has translational kinetic energy. If you were to lift the front wheel of the bike and spin it while the bike is stationary, then the wheel would have only rotational kinetic energy relative to the Earth.

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Section summary

  • The rotational kinetic energy KE rot size 12{ ital "KE" rSub { size 8{ ital "rot"} } } {} for an object with a moment of inertia I and an angular velocity ω size 12{ω} {} is given by
    KE rot = 1 2 2 . size 12{"KE" rSub { size 8{"rot"} } = { {1} over {2} } Iω rSup { size 8{2} } } {}
  • Helicopters store large amounts of rotational kinetic energy in their blades. This energy must be put into the blades before takeoff and maintained until the end of the flight. The engines do not have enough power to simultaneously provide lift and put significant rotational energy into the blades.
  • Work and energy in rotational motion are completely analogous to work and energy in translational motion.
  • The equation for the work-energy theorem    for rotational motion is,
    net W = 1 2 2 1 2 I ω 0 2 . size 12{"net "W= { {1} over {2} } Iω rSup { size 8{2} } - { {1} over {2} } Iω rSub { size 8{0} rSup { size 8{2} } } } {}

Conceptual questions

Describe the energy transformations involved when a yo-yo is thrown downward and then climbs back up its string to be caught in the user’s hand.

What energy transformations are involved when a dragster engine is revved, its clutch let out rapidly, its tires spun, and it starts to accelerate forward? Describe the source and transformation of energy at each step.

The Earth has more rotational kinetic energy now than did the cloud of gas and dust from which it formed. Where did this energy come from?

The figure shows a closed view of a red planet in the sky, with a sun like object seen at the far right and the planet shown here being surrounded by circles of gas and dust.
An immense cloud of rotating gas and dust contracted under the influence of gravity to form the Earth and in the process rotational kinetic energy increased. (credit: NASA)

Problems&Exercises

This problem considers energy and work aspects of [link] —use data from that example as needed. (a) Calculate the rotational kinetic energy in the merry-go-round plus child when they have an angular velocity of 20.0 rpm. (b) Using energy considerations, find the number of revolutions the father will have to push to achieve this angular velocity starting from rest. (c) Again, using energy considerations, calculate the force the father must exert to stop the merry-go-round in two revolutions

(a) 185 J

(b) 0.0785 rev

(c) W = 9 . 81 N size 12{W= {underline {9 "." "81 N"}} } {}

Questions & Answers

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At high concentrations (>0.01 M), the relation between absorptivity coefficient and absorbance is no longer linear. This is due to the electrostatic interactions between the quantum dots in close proximity. If the concentration of the solution is high, another effect that is seen is the scattering of light from the large number of quantum dots. This assumption only works at low concentrations of the analyte. Presence of stray light.
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Source:  OpenStax, Mechanics. OpenStax CNX. Apr 15, 2013 Download for free at http://legacy.cnx.org/content/col11506/1.2
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