Homework Help: Law of motion problem help

1. Sep 4, 2007

mayeh

1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data

two blocks CONNECTED by a cord over a frictionless planes, (for illus. see the fig. below) (a) which way will the system move when the blocks are released from rest?
(b)what is the acceleration of the blocks
(c)what is the tension in the cords?

<a href="http://www.imagevimage.com/gallery.php?entry=images/sa.JPG"><img src="http://www.imagevimage.com/thumbs/sa.JPG" border="0" alt="" /></a>

http://www.imagevimage.com/images/sa.JPG
2. Relevant equations

3. The attempt at a solution

I still dont have any attempted solutions since i cant figure out which direction will the sytem go.. pls help..
1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data

2. Relevant equations

3. The attempt at a solution
1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data

2. Relevant equations

3. The attempt at a solution

2. Sep 4, 2007

chaoseverlasting

Well, you can try finding the force applied by tension along the slope of the wedge, and then comparing with the force of gravity on the blocks along the slope. Since the string is the same, the tension along the string will be uniform.

3. Sep 4, 2007

Staff: Mentor

You don't need to know the direction of the acceleration ahead of time. Just guess a direction, call the acceleration "a", and then solve for it. If it comes out positive, you guessed correctly; if negative, it's opposite to what you assumed.

(You can also figure out the direction by comparing the force pulling each mass down the plane.)

4. Sep 4, 2007

mayeh

thanks! i'll try that..