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Parallel/Perpendicular to the slope

  1. Feb 25, 2012 #1

    The question here pertains to 1 and 2 of the above image. I already got the answers by calculating the net force in the X direction and the X force in the Y direction, but why is this? When they say "Parallel to the slope," why does that mean "in the Y-direction," and not parallel to the slope that the object is on.

    Is there something I am missing here? Sorry if this isn't in the traditional format for questions like this. Shouldn't parallel to the slope mean, literally, the force in the direction that is parallel to the slope (ie. 6N in this picture, minus the component from the 5N down)
  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 26, 2012 #2


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    'Parallel to the slope' means 'in the direction of the slope'. The slope is the thin black line in the figure at a 30 degree angle with the horizontal. The 6 N force is perpendicular to the slope.
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