# Pressure exerted in an elevator

1. Jul 30, 2006

### KingTutATL

A suitcase (mass m=16kg) is resting on the floor of an elevator. The part of the suitcase in contact with the floor measures 0.50m by 0.15m. The elevator is moving upward, the magnitude of its acceleration being 1.5m/s^2. What pressure (in excess of atmospheric pressure) is applied to the floor beneath the suitcase?

This problem isn't too hard. Elevator is going up so the pressure will be greater than normal produced by the suitcase. Take the area of the suitcase and continue from there?

2. Jul 30, 2006

### Andrew Mason

What is the force exerted on the suitcase by the floor? What is the area over which this force acts? That should be all you need.

AM

3. Jul 31, 2006

### KingTutATL

When calculating the force do I just add 1.5m/s^2 to 9.8m/s^2 and then calculate the force per area from there?

4. Jul 31, 2006

### Andrew Mason

Conceptually, the acceleration and gravity are different. You would add the force of gravity (weight) which the floor applies with no acceleration, to the force which the elevetor applies to accelerate the suitcase:

$$F_{normal} = ma + mg$$

AM

5. Jul 31, 2006

### HallsofIvy

Staff Emeritus
Of course, that's just
$$F_{normal}= m(a+ g)$$