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Belt forces

  1. Jul 13, 2005 #1
    Two rollers have a belt that goes between them, like a conveyerbelt. The assembly stands vertical. The lowest of the rolls have a force that acts on its center, and downwards. My book says that this force F can be written as


    where S are the forces that the belt produces as a reaction to F. I would have guessed


    since the two S forces would take up half of the force F each. Why is it not so?
  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 13, 2005 #2


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    Pass. Typo?
  4. Jul 13, 2005 #3
    Well, there are small "shovels" on the belt that picks up sand on the way up and then they come down again on the other side to pick up more. Does this make a difference?
  5. Jul 13, 2005 #4


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    Aha, I was waiting for the extra information!

    Sounds a tad like homework. Ask yourself what the purpose of such a belt is. Do you think having these buckets makes a difference?
  6. Jul 13, 2005 #5
    First, it's not "homework", I have the whole solution here, but I just don't see why there is a minus and not a pluss sign in the equation that's all. I'm thinking that if the belt had a "mind of its own" it wouldn't want to move. So on the side where it goes up, it tries to resist and so S points downward. On the other side the belt goes down, and so it also tries to resist this movement and so S point upwards here. Am I on to something at all with this thought?
  7. Jul 14, 2005 #6


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    Maybe it's just because I have no particular knowledge in this area, and anything that vaguely resembles a formula scares the hell out of me, but one thing strikes me as a little odd. As nearly as my common sense tells me, the force on the bottom roller should be upward since its only purpose is to hold the bottom of the belt down. There should also, I think, be a lateral force when the buckets dig into the sand and drag it sideways before heading up. Am I missing something here?
  8. Jul 16, 2005 #7


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    A belt can only be in tension, so the belt on either side of the roller can only produce an upward force.
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