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Homework Help: Tension, 2 masses, 2 cords hanging vertical

  1. Oct 6, 2009 #1
    Two blocks each of mass m = 3.50 kg are fastened to the top of an elevator as in the figure below.--- this is a horizontal version cuz im on a comp. [top of elevator]--string1--[block #1 3.5kg]--string2--[block #2 3.5kg]
    (a) If the elevator accelerates upward at 1.6 m/s2, find the tensions T1 and T2 in the upper and lower strings.

    (b) If the strings can withstand a maximum tension of 87.0 N, what maximum acceleration can the elevator have before the first string breaks?

    first time here, HELP!
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 6, 2009 #2
    You can start by drawing the free body diagram of the individual strings
  4. Oct 6, 2009 #3
    I did, but I need some serious help aka answer. I have 2 free body diagrams.
    Can you give me the formulas to complete the question.. also using it as a template for other problems
  5. Oct 6, 2009 #4
    Well the only 'template' i can think of will be [tex]\sum F[/tex]=ma where F is all the forces acting on a object. For your case T-mg=0 when they are in equilibrium aka not moving and T-mg=ma when they are moving and the 'a' will be the acceleration of the object.
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