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Q & A: work = force times distance ?

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Most recent answer: 03/08/2016
Q:
A people -moving conveyor-belt moves a 600 newton person a distance of 100 meters through the airport.How much work was done?My real question is : From the information given in this question can I asume there is any friction?
- Myrna San Miguel (age 49)
San Juan, Puerto Rico
A:

You are right to think that friction is relevant.    Work is force x distance in the direction that the force is acting

The conveyer belt is acting up on the person with 600N to hold his weight.  But the person moves horizontally, so there is no work done on the person by that force.

The problem makes no mention of any horizontal forces like friction , so you can't say much about the total work done.   If a coefficient of friction were specified (beween the belt and the floor under it) then you could calculate work done.

-Richard

 


(published on 03/08/2016)

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