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Newton's Laws: Force of Tension

  1. Sep 16, 2008 #1
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data

    A mountain climber, in the process of crossing between two cliffs by a rope, pauses to rest. She weighs 600 N. As the drawing shows, she is closer to the left cliff than to the right cliff, with the result that the tensions in the left and right sides of the rope are not the same. Find the tensions in the rope (a) to the left and (b) to the right of the mountain climber.

    [​IMG]


    2. Relevant equations

    Net Force = Mass * Acceleration


    3. The attempt at a solution

    I'm not really sure how the force of tension works. If it was one rope I could assume that all the tension was on that, but with the two ropes I'm not sure how to figure out how much each rope is holding. I attempted to decompose the force of tension but then didn't know how to find the components. I'm really lost on this problem and any help would be greatly appreciated.
     
    Last edited: Sep 16, 2008
  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 17, 2008 #2
    The woman is in equilibrium. No accleration in x direction and no acceleration in y direction.
    In both the ropes, tension will be along the 2 segments of the ropes. The angles at which the tensions work are given. The y components of tensions will balance the weight of the woman. and the x components will cancel out each other. Thus giving you 2 eqautions with two variables(Tensions in each segment). Solve it to get your answer.
     
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