# Solving Wedge-like Problem with Physics

• EugeneZ
In summary, the conversation is about a physics problem involving a block being moved by a cone and the force needed to be applied to the cone to move the block. The person asking for help has a known mass, friction factor, and contact area for the block, and is trying to calculate the friction force. They are also unsure about how to project forces in the system and have realized they missed the friction between the cone and block. They are seeking assistance from others to solve the problem and have provided a picture for reference.
EugeneZ
Hey, guys! Not really my homework question, I am long past my days of studying physics (I stumbled upon this problem doing some engineering researches) but still i put it here cause it should be rather easy. Here is the picture I made:
http://img248.imageshack.us/img248/7700/riddlew.png

Basically, I've got a block of a known mass, I know friction factor and contacting area, thus I am able to calculate Friction force being exerted upon moving this block. Block is being moved by a cone. I need to know a formula for a Force needed to be applied to a cone to move the block. Thank you very much!

P.S. As for my own efforts of solving, it comes down to this: I realize I have to project and equate projection of cone force to friction force but here it got a bit tricky for me. I'm very rusty in mechanics and I'm not really sure if i should project forces in this system on the side of the cone or on the surface normal of the cone side.

Last edited by a moderator:
Maybe I posted in the wrong forum?

C'mon guys

Well, I am not going to let it go that easy.
F=Ffriction*tan(alpha) or F=friction factor*block's mass*tan(alpha). Am I correct?

P.S. Oh gosh i just realized i totally missed friction between cone and block. :( Guys, I really need your help! Thank you in advance.

Last edited:

Hi there,

It's great to see that you are still interested in physics and using it in your engineering research. The problem you have presented is known as a wedge problem and it can be solved using basic principles of mechanics and friction.

First, let's define some variables to make the problem easier to understand. Let the mass of the block be m, the angle of the cone be θ, the coefficient of friction between the block and the surface be μ, and the force applied to the cone be F.

To solve this problem, we need to consider the forces acting on the block. There are two main forces at play here: the normal force (N) and the friction force (Ff). The normal force is perpendicular to the surface and is equal to the weight of the block (N = mg). The friction force is parallel to the surface and its magnitude is given by Ff = μN.

Now, let's consider the forces acting on the cone. The only force acting on the cone is the force applied (F). This force can be resolved into two components: one perpendicular to the surface (Fcosθ) and one parallel to the surface (Fsinθ).

To move the block, the force applied to the cone (F) must be greater than or equal to the friction force acting on the block (F ≥ Ff). This means that Fcosθ ≥ μmg.

Therefore, the minimum force needed to move the block is given by F = μmg/cosθ.

I hope this helps you solve the problem. Good luck with your research!

## 1. What is a wedge-like problem?

A wedge-like problem refers to a scenario in which a wedge or inclined plane is used to lift or move objects. It involves the application of physical principles to calculate the forces and motion involved in the process.

## 2. How can physics help solve wedge-like problems?

Physics provides the necessary tools and concepts to analyze and understand the forces and motion involved in wedge-like problems. This includes principles such as Newton's Laws of Motion and the concept of mechanical advantage.

## 3. What are some common examples of wedge-like problems?

Some common examples of wedge-like problems include using a ramp to load heavy objects onto a truck, using an inclined plane to lift objects to a higher level, and using a wedge to split logs or cut objects.

## 4. What are the key factors to consider when solving a wedge-like problem?

The key factors to consider when solving a wedge-like problem include the angle and length of the wedge, the weight and position of the object being moved, and the friction between the wedge and the surface it is resting on.

## 5. Are there any real-life applications of solving wedge-like problems?

Yes, solving wedge-like problems has many real-life applications, such as in construction, transportation, and manufacturing industries. It also plays a crucial role in understanding and designing various machines and tools used in everyday life.

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