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Cable Tension Problem

  1. Dec 15, 2007 #1
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data
    There is a box that weighs 25N hanging by two cables. Both of the angles between the cables and the box on both opposite sides are 30 degrees. Find the tension in the cables. If the angles were changed to 5 degrees each how would the tension change.

    2. Relevant equations

    3. The attempt at a solution
    I've been working on this for half an hour and I still can't figure it out. It doesn't look that complicated but i'm stuck because my teacher has been gone all week. Please help.
    Last edited: Dec 15, 2007
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 15, 2007 #2
    From your description, it sounds like the cables form a V with the box at the bottom. This is an equilibrium problem, so you need to set two sides of an equation equal to each other. One side is 25N, other side will be 2 (because there are two cables) multiplied by the tension multiplied by cos(90-30). So you have:

    25 = 2Tcos60

    You should be able to get the second part easily with the same equation.
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