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My main question:

Given an angle of incline, x, how can you find the coefficients of static and kinetic friction? Is it possible?

My homework problem is:

Someone wearing leather shoes is standing in the middle of a wooden plank. One end of the board is gradually raised until it makes an angle of 17 degrees with the floor, at which point the person begins to slide down the incline. Compute the coefficient of static friction.

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I used the simple formula tan x = Mu s, and it seemed to work, giving me the correct answer of 0.31, although I have no idea why. Can anyone explain to me why tan x gives the coefficient, and whether it gives the static or kinetic coefficient? I know its hard to explain without a free body diagram, but I need help..

Given an angle of incline, x, how can you find the coefficients of static and kinetic friction? Is it possible?

My homework problem is:

Someone wearing leather shoes is standing in the middle of a wooden plank. One end of the board is gradually raised until it makes an angle of 17 degrees with the floor, at which point the person begins to slide down the incline. Compute the coefficient of static friction.

-----

I used the simple formula tan x = Mu s, and it seemed to work, giving me the correct answer of 0.31, although I have no idea why. Can anyone explain to me why tan x gives the coefficient, and whether it gives the static or kinetic coefficient? I know its hard to explain without a free body diagram, but I need help..

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