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Centripetal acceleration of ball and rope

  1. Jul 30, 2007 #1
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data

    An athlete swings a 5 kg ball horizontally on the end of a rope. the ball moves in a circle of a radius .800m at an angular speed of .500rev/second. if the maximum tension the rope can withstand before breaking is 100N, what is the maximum tangential speed the ball can have?

    2. Relevant equations

    I think you have to use net forces in the 'y' direction, as well as omega_final^2=omega_intial^2+2alpha(delta theta)

    3. The attempt at a solution

    i've drawn a free body diagram of the 5kg mass at the bottom of a circle (so that the centripital acceleration is going directly upwards). i know i have to solve for alpha. can i do that by solving for the acceleration through the net forces in the y direction with the free body diagram?
  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 30, 2007 #2


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    The centredal force acts outward (in the x direction if you like) the weight acts downward (in -y). The tension in the rope is just the force triangle of these two.
  4. Jul 30, 2007 #3
    i thought that at the bottom of the circle, the centripetal acceleration would be going upwards?
  5. Jul 31, 2007 #4


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    I assumed horizontal to mean the circle was horizontal, like swinging a hammer throw around your head?

    But in any case the centripedal accel always acts outwards away form the axis.
  6. Jul 31, 2007 #5
    oh okay...i think that might help
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