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Homework Help: Calculating friction in Parallel?

  1. Sep 8, 2012 #1

    For a school project I have created a system which applies an equal force to 4 objects of measurable friction. Each yields a frictional force of approx. 3N (calculated from F = μFNormal) when in motion - but I am not quite sure as to calculating the total frictional force the combined set of 4 generates 'together' against the system supplying the same applied force across all of them.
    Is it as simple as adding the 4 frictional forces together? Or perhaps more complex, through employing the parallel equation of (1/FTotal) = (1/F) + (1/F) + (1/F) + (1/F), for example? Or maybe its something different?

    Thanks in advance for any help. :smile:
  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 8, 2012 #2


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    If they are all acting in the same direction just add them together. If they act in different directions or at different angles you need use vector addition.
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