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Just had this pondering: Does the force on a water dam depend merely on the height of the water column behind it or does it depend on the total amount of water behind it? For the same dam if I have a lake behind it that is just a few metres wide vs. having a vastly large lake behind it with the same height.
Initially I want to say that the pressure at any given depth is dependant on water height/column only, so the force on the dam would be the same no matter the size of the lake, But that doesn't feel right somehow....
Initially I want to say that the pressure at any given depth is dependant on water height/column only, so the force on the dam would be the same no matter the size of the lake, But that doesn't feel right somehow....