PhysicsLAB CP Workbook
Incline Places: Force Vector Resultants

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On a previous page we considered only the weight vector W for a block on a friction-free incline. Here we also consider the normal force N.
 
With no friction, Only two forces act: W and N. We put the tail of N at the block's center to coincide with the tail of W - so we can better find the resultant via the parallelogram rule. We construct a parallelogram [dotted lines] whose sides are W and N to find the resultant W + N. The resultant is the diagonal as shown [bold vector]. This is the net force on the block.
 
 
Note the net forces [bold vectors] for the blocks below.
 
For a steeper incline, N
 
For a steeper incline, the net force
 
How does the net force compare to the parallel component of W as determined on the previous page? 

Refer to the following information for the next five questions.

The block slides down a curved ramp, as on the previous page. In each location, the net force resultant of W and N  is parallel to the ramp surface. Draw N for locations A, B, and C, and construct parallelograms and the net forces.
At which location is the net force greatest?
 
At which location is the acceleration greatest?
 
As the speed of the block increases, acceleration
 
On inclined flat planes, acceleration down the incline
 
On curved inclines, acceleration
 



 
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