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Question

Consider a two-particle system with the particles having masses m1 and m2. If the first particle is pushed towards the centre of mass by a distance 'd', by what distance should the second particle be moved so as to keep the centre of mass at the same position?


  1. (m1m2m1+m2)d

  2. m2m1d

  3. m1m2d

  4. (m1m2m1+m2)d


Solution

The correct option is C

m1m2d


Again, as we aleady know ,
XCMm1X1+m2X2m1+m2
XCM = 0 
Assuming leftards as negative and rightwards as potive
0=m1d+m2dm1+m2
d' = m1dm2
The negative sign indicates that m2 should be shifted by
(m1m2) d leftwards in order to keep the COM stationary.

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