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How do I tell whether a torque is clockwise or counterclockwise?

  1. Aug 5, 2007 #1
    Hey guys,

    I know how to do torque and forces for an object in equilibrium...but how do I know whether a torque is clockwise or counterclockwise?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 6, 2007 #2
    Often if you see in which direction the force acts you can find the direction of rotation. If not, and you only have the torque, you can use the corkscrew rule to find the direction of rotation. I.e. point the thumb of your right hand in the direction of the torque and then your fingers curl in the direction of rotation.

    So the torque acts in the clockwise direction from a viewpoint that looks in the direction of the torque.
     
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