Launching a car

Among the many strong points of Danger Girl, one of them is not how readily they rip off ideas (sometimes completely directly) from other stories, including movies. Previously I had mentioned how the beginning of Trinity looked very similar to the beginning of Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade. In issue #2 a similar moment occurs, which bears some similarity to the helicopter explosion in Die Hard 4.

I watched a video detailing some of the physics involved in this stunt and in terms of vectors they do a sufficiently good job in terms of describing how far a car launched at approximately 60 mph would travel (they set the distance of the helicopter off of the ground at 30 feet which seems similar to that in Danger Girl). The end state of their analysis was that it might be possible. Granted that I don't know as much about physics, but there are a few things lacking here for me. In their analysis they stated that it would be possible under a number of conditions, specifically that it was launched off of a ramp with no other forms of deceleration. I find that this is one of the problems that I always had with physics, in that everything is so complex that it is hard to deal with more than one problem at a time, and in such a case, there are so many problems that it is kind of hard to combine them all together. Forgetting for a moment that Sydney's plan was to to shoot a driver of a car in the hopes that in his death that he would still apply force to the accelerator and drive the car in the desired direction. From a physical standpoint, this consideration is not even worth considering, as I am not sure that such an outcome would ever be planned on by even the most calculating hero. The problem though here is two fold, but both sides of the same problem, that of the ramp of launching platform. Generally speaking when one object hits another in the same on dimensional plane, the resulting effect is a transfer of energy between the two (in the case of cars, they crash.) If this energy is to be transferred to a different dimension (in this case shot upward) there needs to be something to change its direction. In both cases it is implied that the collision forms the stationary object into a form of ramp. This doesn't work for the previously mentioned two reasons. The first is that things generally don't take clean shapes such as a ramp after violent collisions. This is a result of entropy whereas things tend towards chaos as opposed towards order (I know entropy is a lot more than this from a scientific standpoint, but that is the simple version.) The other is that even if the momentum of the impacting vehicle could form the stationary object into a ramp that it would lose a lot of its momentum doing so (momentum is a product of mass and velocity.) Thus the moving car would have to be going a lot faster than 60 mph as it would be losing a lot of that energy to friction. On either one of these two limitations the stunt fails, in both the comic and the movie. It still looked cool though.

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