A 200 g mass attached to a horizontal spring oscillates at a frequency of 2.0 Hz. At *t *= 0 s, the mass is at *x *= 5.0 cm and has *v**x *= -30 cm/s

Determine the phase constant

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To solve for the phase constant, we should take note of the following expressions:

`x(t) = A cos(omega*t + phi)`

`v(t) = dx/dt = -omega A sin(omega*t + phi)`

where:

x = length/distance = 5.0 cm

v = velocity = -30 cm/s

f = frequency = 2.0Hz

t = time = 0 s

A = amplitude

`phi` = phase constant

`omega` = angular frequency

`omega = 2*pi*f`

`omega = 2*pi*2.0`

`omega = 4pi`

**Phase Constant**

`x(t) = A cos(omega*t + phi)`

`5.0 = A cos (4pi*0 + phi)`

`5.0 = A cos (0 + phi)`

`5.0 = A cos(phi) ` EQUATION 1

`v(t) = dx/dt = -omega A sin(omega*t + phi)`

`-30 = -4pi A sin(4pi*0 + phi)`

`-30 = -4pi A sin(0 + phi)`

`30 = 4pi A sin(phi) ` EQUATION 2

Now divide the equation 2 by the equation 1 (2/1):

`30/5.0 = (4pi A sin(phi))/(A cos(phi))`

`6 = 4pi (sin phi)/(cos phi)`

Remember from trigonometric identities: tanx = sinx/cosx

`6 = 4pi*tan phi`

`6/(4pi) = tan phi`

`phi = tan^-1 (6/(4pi))`

`phi = 25.52` **-> phase constant**

**Sources:**

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