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Friction direction in circular motion

  1. May 4, 2012 #1
    In a circular motion without any banking of road frictional force is the only force causing centripetal force right? But why does it act centrally? Without friction the vehicle will go straight as no centripetal force is present. But frictional always acts opposite to the direction of motion. So it must act opposite to the motion of the vehicle that is backwards and not centrally! Well this suggests there is no central force to make the vehicle move in circular direction. There is only backward force
    I think i am missing something. Where am i wrong?
  2. jcsd
  3. May 4, 2012 #2


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    Dynamic friction acts oppositely to the relative motion of the bodies in contact. But here you're dealing with static friction - the wheels are rolling, not skidding. Static friction acts to oppose a potential relative motion, not an actual one.
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