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Rubber stopper hanging from the view view mirror of a car

  • Thread starter shawli
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  • #1
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Homework Statement



A 18g rubber stopper is suspended by a 45-cm string from the rear view mirror of a car. As the car accelerates eastward, the string makes an angle of 5.1 degrees with the vertical. Determine the acceleration of the car.


Homework Equations





The Attempt at a Solution



I'm totally stumped. There are no forces or anything given, not even sure what the diagram should look like : |. Help !
 

Answers and Replies

  • #2
Doc Al
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What forces act on the stopper?
 
  • #3
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Gravity?
And it's positioned at an angle because of inertia ? I don't think that can be drawn out as a force though.
 
  • #4
Doc Al
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Yes, gravity is one of the two forces acting on the stopper. What's the other? (What's attached to the stopper?)
 
  • #5
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Oh right, tension !

So, from the rubber stopper, a force point outward diagonally (along the string) is the force of tension.
And a force pointing directly downwards is gravity?
 
  • #6
Doc Al
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So, from the rubber stopper, a force point outward diagonally (along the string) is the force of tension.
And a force pointing directly downwards is gravity?
Exactly!
 
  • #7
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Oh okay! One more thing --the length of the string is given. I get confused when questions about the magnitude of forces give me the length or distance of something. I'm not sure what I can do with that?
 
  • #8
Doc Al
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Just analyze the forces as you normally would. Ignore any extraneous information given.
 

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