Tension, 2 masses, 2 cords hanging vertical

  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. You can start by drawing the free body diagram of the individual strings
  4. 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. 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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