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written by Tom Henderson
This webpage provides a detailed introduction to Force and its meaning. This is one of the sections of the tutorial on Newton's Laws and Forces. Emphasis is laid on the basic understanding of Force as a vector quantity.

The descriptions are supplemented by classic examples of forces in our day to day lives. The website also defines the unit of force, Newton. An introduction to free body diagrams are also provided, where balanced and unbalanced forces are briefly discussed.

This item is part of The Physics Classroom, a comprehensive set of tutorials and multimedia resources for high school physics.

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Subjects Levels Resource Types
Classical Mechanics
- Applications of Newton's Laws
= Friction
- Newton's Second Law
= Force, Acceleration
= Interacting Objects
- High School
- Middle School
- Lower Undergraduate
- Instructional Material
= Tutorial
- Audio/Visual
= Illustration
= Image/Image Set
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Access Rights:
Free access
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© 1996 Tom Henderson
Keywords:
FBD, Types of Forces, Unit of Force, action at a distance, applied force, contact force, friction, non-contact force
Record Cloner:
Metadata instance created March 27, 2011 by Tom Henderson
Record Updated:
March 17, 2014 by Caroline Hall
Last Update
when Cataloged:
July 1, 2011
Other Collections:

AAAS Benchmark Alignments (2008 Version)

4. The Physical Setting

4F. Motion
  • 6-8: 4F/M3a. An unbalanced force acting on an object changes its speed or direction of motion, or both.
  • 9-12: 4F/H1. The change in motion (direction or speed) of an object is proportional to the applied force and inversely proportional to the mass.
  • 9-12: 4F/H4. Whenever one thing exerts a force on another, an equal amount of force is exerted back on it.
  • 9-12: 4F/H7. In most familiar situations, frictional forces complicate the description of motion, although the basic principles still apply.
  • 9-12: 4F/H8. Any object maintains a constant speed and direction of motion unless an unbalanced outside force acts on it.

9. The Mathematical World

9B. Symbolic Relationships
  • 9-12: 9B/H4. Tables, graphs, and symbols are alternative ways of representing data and relationships that can be translated from one to another.

Next Generation Science Standards

Disciplinary Core Ideas (K-12)

Forces and Motion (PS2.A)
  • For any pair of interacting objects, the force exerted by the first object on the second object is equal in strength to the force that the second object exerts on the first, but in the opposite direction (Newton's third law). (6-8)
  • The motion of an object is determined by the sum of the forces acting on it; if the total force on the object is not zero, its motion will change. The greater the mass of the object, the greater the force needed to achieve the same change in motion. For any given object, a larger force causes a larger change in motion. (6-8)
  • Newton's second law accurately predicts changes in the motion of macroscopic objects. (9-12)
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Record Link
AIP Format
T. Henderson, (1996), WWW Document, (http://www.physicsclassroom.com/Class/newtlaws/u2l2a.cfm).
AJP/PRST-PER
T. Henderson, Physics Classroom: Force and Its Representation , (1996), <http://www.physicsclassroom.com/Class/newtlaws/u2l2a.cfm>.
APA Format
Henderson, T. (2011, July 1). Physics Classroom: Force and Its Representation . Retrieved December 18, 2014, from http://www.physicsclassroom.com/Class/newtlaws/u2l2a.cfm
Chicago Format
Henderson, Tom. Physics Classroom: Force and Its Representation . July 1, 2011. http://www.physicsclassroom.com/Class/newtlaws/u2l2a.cfm (accessed 18 December 2014).
MLA Format
Henderson, Tom. Physics Classroom: Force and Its Representation . 1996. 1 July 2011. 18 Dec. 2014 <http://www.physicsclassroom.com/Class/newtlaws/u2l2a.cfm>.
BibTeX Export Format
@misc{ Author = "Tom Henderson", Title = {Physics Classroom: Force and Its Representation }, Volume = {2014}, Number = {18 December 2014}, Month = {July 1, 2011}, Year = {1996} }
Refer Export Format

%A Tom Henderson
%T Physics Classroom: Force and Its Representation
%D July 1, 2011
%U http://www.physicsclassroom.com/Class/newtlaws/u2l2a.cfm
%O text/html

EndNote Export Format

%0 Electronic Source
%A Henderson, Tom
%D July 1, 2011
%T Physics Classroom: Force and Its Representation
%V 2014
%N 18 December 2014
%8 July 1, 2011
%9 text/html
%U http://www.physicsclassroom.com/Class/newtlaws/u2l2a.cfm


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