Calculating the mechanical advantage of an inclined plane
Remember, to calculate Mechanical Advantage of a lever - it's the ratio of the input and output forces only. As with levers, the weight of the object will always be the output force. And, like the levers, the force that I use to push or pull will always be the input force. Therefore, to calculate the mechanical advantage of an inclined plane is as follows:
After this experiment and looking at the diagram - you might realize that because of the length of the inclined plane will always be longer than the rise, AND it will always be at an angle relative to the direction of gravity, you will ALWAYS have a mechanical advantage with an inclined plane. Therefore, unlike levers, it will always be much easier to calculate for the mechanical advantage of an inclined plane by simply putting the larger number on top.
Lesson Plan Overview:
- Do quiz
- Go over lab
- Discuss mechanical advantage of an inclined plane
- Discuss what work is and how simple machines alter work.
- Discuss how simple machines alters the direction of the force, the amount of force needed & the distance traveled.
- If there's time, do the balancing pennies lab.