Force required to move a wooden block

Our Objective

To establish relationship between weight of a rectangular wooden block lying on a horizontal table and the minimum force required to just move it using a spring balance.

The Theory

According to Newton’s Second Law of Motion, the force acting on a body is directly proportional to the product of the mass of the body and the acceleration produced in the body by the application of the force. The acceleration takes place in the direction in which the force acts.

Newton’s Second Law of Motion precisely explains the relationship between force and acceleration.

Suppose a body of mass ‘m’ is moving by the application of a force ‘F’,  then the produced acceleration ‘a’ will be directly proportional to the applied force.

Acceleration ∝ Force 

F ∝ a 

 F ∝ m 

             Therefore, F = kma       ………… (1)

 Where k is constant of proportionality

 In SI unit, k =1

Therefore, F = ma


Importance of the Newton’s Second Law of Motion

  •  Newton’s Second Law of Motion gives a quantitative measure of force.

                          F = ma

  • The Second Law is a basic law of motion because both First and Third Law can be derived from this law.

Examples of the application of the Second Law of Motion

  1. Breaking a slab of ice.
  2. Catching a cricket ball.
  3. An athlete practicing high jump or long jump.

From these examples, it is clear that we unknowingly try to reduce or increase the rate of change of momentum, by reducing or increasing the time period in which this change in momentum takes place.

Learning Outcomes

The student learns about:

  1. Force.
  2. Relation between force, mass and acceleration.
  3. Newton’s Second Law of Motion.