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Homework Help: Newtons Laws, Finding tension in the tow cable and foce

  1. Oct 15, 2013 #1
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data
    Just started tension problems and having some trouble figuring out how to approach the problem. Thanks for any help in advance.

    Consider a rocket that is taking off and towing a large container of trash. The
    rocket’s engines exert a force, F, that causes the rocket and container to accelerate at
    4.50 m/s2. The rocket has a mass of 3.00 × 103 kg, and the container has a mass of
    1.00 × 103 kg. Find the tension in the tow cable and the force, F.

    2. Relevant equations

    3. The attempt at a solution
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 15, 2013 #2
    Start with free body diagram and show us what you get.
  4. Oct 15, 2013 #3
    mass a of the rocket. FN upward is the F(RA), downward we have m(ag) and also m(bg)?
    mass b of container. Upward would be F(t) and FN would be F(RB)? downward m(bg).

    I have the most trouble the free body diagrams.

    Work. Part 1, A= F / ma+mb. F=A(ma+mb) = 1.80x10^4 N
    Part 2, Ft=mb * a = 4.50x10^3 N
  5. Oct 15, 2013 #4
    What is FN? :confused:
    Seems good. :smile:
  6. Oct 15, 2013 #5
    Sorry I was meaning to write it as the Normal Force, NF better?
  7. Oct 15, 2013 #6
    I was afraid so...there is no normal force here! Normal forces come in play when there is a body in contact with another. See: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Normal_force
    For normal force it is general practice to write Fn or just N.
  8. Oct 15, 2013 #7
    Thanks for the help. Just clarifying Fn made this system much easier to understand.
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