Acceleration of a Pulled Spool
NAVAL ACADEMY ANNAPOLIS MD DEPT OF PHYSICS
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A well-known lecture demonstration consists of pulling a spool by the free end of a string wrapped around its inner diameter. By pulling at different angles relative to the floor, the spool can be made to roll either toward or away from you. This is explained by considering the torque about the point of contact O between the spool and the floor. A number of authors have noted that for a cylinder rolling under the action of a horizontal pulling force, the frictional force can be in the direction of motion of its center of mass C. This often puzzles introductory students. It is therefore helpful to explore the kinematics for the more general case of pulling at an arbitrary angle with respect to the floor.
- Operations Research