Centripetal force of a rollercoaster

In summary, the force exerted by the track on the wheel of the roller coaster can be calculated by considering the centripetal force, weight, and normal force. At a speed of 45 m/s, the magnitude of this force can be determined using the mass of 402 kg and the radius of 70 m. The coaster is at the top of the loop, so the normal force will contribute to the overall centripetal force. Further calculations can be done by considering the weight and centripetal force acting downward.
  • #1
dkgojackets
38
0
"The wheels of a certain roller coaster are both above and below the rails so that the car will not leave the rails. The mass supported by this particular wheel is 402 kg and the radius of this section of track is 70 m. What is the magnitude of the force that the track exerts on the wheel when the speed of the car is 45 m/s?"

I'm not sure where to go. I've tried finding the centripetal acceleration and multiplying it by 402, but it was wrong. I have a FBD but don't know what to do from here.
 
Physics news on Phys.org
  • #2
dkgojackets said:
"The wheels of a certain roller coaster are both above and below the rails so that the car will not leave the rails. The mass supported by this particular wheel is 402 kg and the radius of this section of track is 70 m. What is the magnitude of the force that the track exerts on the wheel when the speed of the car is 45 m/s?"

I'm not sure where to go. I've tried finding the centripetal acceleration and multiplying it by 402, but it was wrong. I have a FBD but don't know what to do from here.
Is the coaster at the top of the curve or at the bottom? The weight of the coaster as well as the normal force will contribute to the centripetal force.
 
  • #3
It is at the top of the loop.

Normal force I know is perpendicular to the surface, so would it just be the sum of weight and the centripetal force down?
 

Related to Centripetal force of a rollercoaster

What is centripetal force?

Centripetal force is a force that acts on an object moving in a circular path, towards the center of the circle. It is responsible for keeping the object moving along the circular path.

How does centripetal force apply to rollercoasters?

In a rollercoaster, centripetal force is what keeps the riders moving along the circular track. The track exerts a force on the riders towards the center of the track, creating the necessary centripetal force for the riders to follow the track's path.

What factors affect the centripetal force of a rollercoaster?

The speed of the rollercoaster, the mass of the riders, and the radius of the track all affect the centripetal force. A higher speed or smaller radius will require a larger centripetal force, while a larger mass will require a smaller centripetal force.

How is centripetal force calculated?

The formula for calculating centripetal force is F = mv²/r, where F is the centripetal force, m is the mass of the object, v is the velocity, and r is the radius of the circle.

Is centripetal force the only force acting on a rollercoaster?

No, there are other forces at play on a rollercoaster, such as gravity and friction. However, centripetal force is necessary for the riders to stay on the track and maintain their circular motion.

Similar threads

  • Introductory Physics Homework Help
Replies
18
Views
2K
  • Introductory Physics Homework Help
Replies
13
Views
1K
  • Introductory Physics Homework Help
Replies
2
Views
2K
  • Introductory Physics Homework Help
Replies
6
Views
2K
  • Introductory Physics Homework Help
Replies
6
Views
3K
  • Introductory Physics Homework Help
Replies
5
Views
2K
Replies
7
Views
2K
  • Introductory Physics Homework Help
Replies
4
Views
786
  • Introductory Physics Homework Help
Replies
5
Views
6K
  • Introductory Physics Homework Help
Replies
33
Views
6K
Back
Top