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Forces to push a trolley up a slope

  1. Feb 12, 2008 #1
    I'm a Health and Safety advisor having a blonde moment.

    Trying to find the equation to use, think it's something to do with F=ma any help please.

    A 4 wheeled trolley will be pushed up a slope of 40 degrees and the maximum amount of force that can be applied is 15kg to get it moving and 7kg to keep it moving.

    Ignoring friction, What is the max weight that the trolley can be?
  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 12, 2008 #2
    I'm gonna go ahead and assume you meant 15 and 7 newtons, not kg, except you also need to know the mass of the trolley, which we'll call m

    There are two forces on the trolley, gravity, and the guy pushing. Presumably the guy isn't an idiot and pushes it directly up the incline, but the force of gravity(Fg=mg)acts straight down, so you care about the component of it directed down the ramp, which can be found with trig.

    EDIT: Oh haha you're trying to find m

    So anyhoo you would take that applied force of 15N, and set it equal to the component of gravity coming down the ramp and solve for m
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2008
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