Worksheet: Damped Oscillations

In this worksheet, we will practice calculating the energy lost due to dampening by resistive forces in systems exhibiting simple harmonic motion.


The amplitude of a lightly damped oscillator decreases by 3.0% during each cycle. What percentage of the mechanical energy of the oscillator is lost in each cycle?


If a car has a suspension system with a force constant of 5.00×10 N/m, how much energy must the car’s shocks remove to dampen an oscillation starting with a maximum displacement of 0.0750 m?


A car with a mass of 1,530 kg bounces vertically with an initial velocity of 0.940 m/s, returning to its original vertical position after bouncing. How much energy must the car’s shock absorbers dissipate in order to dampen the bounce? Assume that the drag is negligible.


What quantity is the damping force in damped and forced vibrations proportional to?

  • Amass of the vibrating object
  • Bvelocity of the vibrating object
  • Cmomentum of the vibrating object
  • Dweight of the vibrating object
  • Edisplacement of the vibrating object

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