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For the first experiment in Phy10L entitled Resolution of Forces, we were

given the following materials: 1 piece of force table, 4 pieces of super pulley with
clamp, 4 pieces of mass hanger, 1 set of slotted mass, and a protractor. In this
experiment, each group were given a system of strings with varying tensions that
act concurrently (acting on the same point). Each group will analyse the
components of force, determine the resultant and equilibrant of the system of
forces and try to compare the methods involve. This means that each group will be
working on forces on a two dimensional plane.
In this experiment, force is one of the major focus and by definition, force is
a pull or push upon an object resulting from the interaction with another object.
The force is said to act on the object to change its velocity. Whenever there is an
interaction between two objects, there is a force upon each of the objects. When the
interaction comes to an end, the two objects no longer experience the force. Force
only exist as a result of an interaction. Equilibrium is also an important factor in
this experiment. It is also known as a state of balance and basing from the given
hand out, it states that an equilibrium at rest is known as static equilibrium. The
first condition of equilibrium states that the sum of all forces acting on a body or
system is zero.
In the performed experiment, concurrent forces act on a ring pulled by 4
strings with loads attached to its ends There are three major objectives for this
experiment that is to determine the resultant force of concurrent forces using the
Graphical and analytical method, to determine also the first condition of
equilibrium and its implications, and to differentiate scalar from vector quantities
and compare resultant from equilibrant.

For the first objective, that is to determine the resultant force of concurrent
forces using the Graphical and analytical method, there are several methods that
goes under these two. For graphical method, parallelogram method and polygon
method can be used.
Parallelogram method is used for adding two vectors together. The tail of
the arrow(representing the resultant vector) is in the same location as the initial
point of the two vectors and goes to the other opposite side of the parallelogram.
Figure 1 shows two forces, Fa and Fb, added with the resultant R.


Figure 1


And for the polygon method, it is used if there are more than two given
forces. The arrows in this method are connected head to tail. The arrow that closes
the polygon will be the resultant R. The tail of the resultant is located at the tail of
the first vector while its head is pointed toward the head of the last vector. Figure 2
shows the resultant R is drawn from the tail of the first vector F 1 to the end of the
last vector F3.



Figure 2
Since there are more than two forces in this experiment, polygon method is
to be used with regards to the graphical method. In graphing, each drawing must be
well-measured, the length of the vector, and the measurement of the angle.

For analytical method, there are also two methods that falls under this, those
are the triangle method and the component method. For the triangle method, the
number of vectors to be used are limited for up to 2-3 vectors only and in which
the laws of cosine and sine are used to solve for the resultant force.
On the other hand, component method is used for adding any number of forces.
Each vector is divided into its x and y components using sine and cosine functions,
components heading in the +x or +y are considered positive and components
heading x or y are considered negative. In this method, the resultant may be
determined by adding first all the components of forces along the x-axis,
and along the y-axis,



and then using the following equations to get the

resultant and its direction where Fn is the last force being added.

F x =F 1 x + F2 x + F 3 x + F nx
F y=F 1 y + F 2 y + F 3 y + F ny

D= ( F x ) +( F y )

tan 1 (


<< D=magnitude

<< direction

There are seven procedures for this experiment, first is to set up the
apparatuses ,assemble the system using only four pulleys, Second is to attach a
hanger at the end of each string hat passes over a frictionless pulley and arbitrary
suspend a mass on each hanger.

The goal for this

experiment is to adjust the angle of the
strings or vary the load on the hanger
until the ring is at the center, by trial
and error. After following the procedures,
we are instructed to gather the data and
put it in a table. The following tables
below are the data that we got for trial 1 and 2




F1= 75g


F1= 50g


F2 = 30g


F2 = 25g


F3 = 40g


F3 = 60g


F 4= 105g

4 =176

F 4= 102g

4 =188

Table 1 Trial 1

Table 2 Trial 2

Concurrent forces reach the state of equilibrium when the sum of all its
forces is equal to zero. Force is a vector quantity that, when applied to a rigid body,
has a tendency to produce translation, which means a movement in a straight line.
When the equilibrant was identified, the ring in the middle did not experience a
change in motion anymore. This means that it reached its state of equilibrium.
After using the formula and compared it to the data we got using the
graphical method, we came up with a very low value of percentage error.
Computation and the graph are shown. It is very important to have graphed and

computed for the data carefully to avoid a high value of percentage error. Although
there are some errors that can not be avoided such as the uneven flooring or level
of the table. It is also important to place the scale when doing the graphical

In this experiment, the forces that acted on the string to pull the ring are the
vector quantities. After finishing the experiment, we have successfully determined
the resultant vectors by using both of the analytical and graphical methods. Since
in ours experiment, there exist more than 2 forces, that is why polygon method
must be used for graphical and component method for analytical.
And as stated before, concurrent forces reach the state of equilibrium when
the sum of all its forces is equal to zero. The first condition of equilibrium states
that the sum of all forces acting on a body or system is zero. Therefore the state of
equilibrium has been reached once the ring is staying still at the center of the force
table. The state of equilibrium will be reached by adjusting the string of the fourth
vector by trial and error. By doing so, we will also be able to find for the resultant
vector. The mass of the hangers cannot be disregarded because its weight can still
affect the equilibrium even when there is no slotted mass on it.
A scalar quantity is said to be a one dimensional measurement of a quantity
like temperature or weight. While a vector has more than one number associated
with it. And basing from the experiment, the important factors in differentiating
scalar from a vector is that a vector has magnitude and direction but a scalar
quantity has no direction. For me, the more efficient, accurate and reliable method
to use is the analytical method because it only requires calculations which is more
precise than the polygon method. The polygon method is more time consuming
because of the care required in drawing the vectors to avoid errors.