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I want a word that is used to mean an object involved in a collision, for example, say two tennis balls collide - ball 1 and ball 2 - what would be a word that could describe either ball, only in the context of a collision.

Similarly to how each particle involved in a reaction is a reactant.

Example sentence following the tennis balls:

The two balls, or _____ in a physics context, collided in mid-air.

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In physics, the word body is used. Form Cambridge Dictionary:

physics specialized a separate object or mass

Example sentences from Wikipedia's page on collisions (emphasis mine):

There are two types of collisions between two bodies - 1) Head-on collisions or one-dimensional collisions - where the velocity of each body just before impact is along the line of impact, and 2) Non-head-on collisions, oblique collisions or two-dimensional collisions - where the velocity of each body just before impact is not along the line of impact.

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  • Thanks, this works! – L. McDonald Jul 7 '19 at 3:41

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