What is Force?
Everything in this world is surrounded by forces, i.e., push, pull or gravitational force. These forces can slow-down, accelerate or change the shape of any object they are employed on. In this manner, a force is an interaction which, when applied to an object, changes or is likely to change its state of motion or rest. Thus, the force can bring stationary objects into motion. In the same manner, it can stop the moving objects.
Force is a vector quantity, i.e., it needs magnitude along with a direction, wherein the force is applied.
How is Force Calculated?
Force is calculated in newton, which is abbreviated as “N”. One newton is equal to a force, which when employed on a 1 kg heavy object, accelerates it to 1 m/s2. In other words, if we continuously apply one newton force to an object with 1 kg weight, its velocity will rise by 1 meter per second in each passing second until we eliminate the force.
We can calculate force by using the Newton’s second law of motion:
F=m x a
Here “m” denotes the mass and “a” denotes the acceleration of the object in question.
Example: A motorbike has a mass of 100 kg and an acceleration of 5 m/s2. Calculate the force that is acting on it.
The mass and acceleration of the motorbike are provided. To calculate the force, apply the Newton’s second law of motion.
F = m × a = 100 × 5 N = 500 N
Types of Force
Different types of force are present as per their nature. Certain most familiar types of force are discussed below:
Friction: Friction is the force that competes against the motion of an object. When we kick a box, it comes to rest after some time. In this case, friction slows down the box. It acts only on the objects that are moving.
Gravitation: Gravitation is an attractive force which is caused by very heavy objects, such as planets. Gravitation attracts everything that has mass. We can stand on the earth on account of its gravitational force.
Tension: Tension is the pulling force which is exerted on cables, strings, or other such objects.
Torque is a type of force which twists or rotates an object.
Gravitational and electromagnetic forces are called non-contact forces because they do not require a contact with the object in order to exert force. They are able to exert a force on distant objects.
Isaac Newton described the force in his law, called Newton’s second law of motion.