Author Topic: Blocks and center of gravity  (Read 13934 times)

Fu-Kwun Hwang

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Blocks and center of gravity
« on: February 25, 2007, 04:37:12 pm »
This is a home work problem shown in many Fundamental Physics textbooks .

   * How to stack four uniform blocks on top of a table, so that they extend as far right as possible and still remain stable.
   * How should each be positioned?
   * Can the top block have its entire length beyond the edge of the table.

# Rules :
   So long as the center of gravity is directly above some point
   within area of support, the system will be stable

# You can drag and move blocks horizontal with your mouse.
# The stability of the sub-system is color coded
   1. Green: the sub-system is in stable equilibrium
   2. yellow: the center of gravity is right above the edge of the supporting block.
   3. red: the sub-system is unstable, it will fall in real life.
# The center of gravity for each block is shown as a small blue dot.
# If you press "Show center of mass" button
   1. The center of gravity for the blocks being moved will be shown as vector.
   2. The length of the vector is proportional to the gravitational force for each balanced sub-system.

Full screen applet or Problem viewing java?Add to exception site list
Press the Alt key and the left mouse button to drag the applet off the browser and onto the desktop. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 Taiwan License
  • Please feel free to post your ideas about how to use the simulation for better teaching and learning.
  • Post questions to be asked to help students to think, to explore.
  • Upload worksheets as attached files to share with more users.
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Original JDK1.0.2 version of the the same simulation