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Download HSEB Notes of Physics | Laws of Motion | Extra Reference | E-Book | Class 11
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Posted By on Wednesday, March 6, 2013 | 7:41 AM

CLASS : 11
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In the preceding Chapter, our concern was to describe the motion of a particle in space quantitatively. We saw that uniform motion needs the concept of velocity alone whereas non-uniform motion requires the concept of acceleration in addition. So far, we have not asked the question as to what governs the motion of bodies. In this chapter, we turn to this basic question. Let us first guess the answer based on our common experience. To move a football at rest, someone must kick it. To throw a stone upwards, one has to give it
an upward push. A breeze causes the branches of a tree to swing; a strong wind can even move heavy objects. A boat moves in a flowing river without anyone rowing it. Clearly, some external agency is needed to provide force to move a body from rest. Likewise, an external force is needed also to retard or stop motion. You can stop a ball rolling down an inclined plane by applying a force against the direction of its motion. In these examples, the external agency of force (hands, wind, stream, etc) is in contact with the object. This is not always necessary. A stone released from the top of a building accelerates downward due to the gravitational pull of the earth. A bar magnet can attract an iron nail from a distance. This shows that external agencies (e.g. gravitational and magnetic forces ) can exert force on a body even from a

distance. In short, a force is required to put a stationary body in motion or stop a moving body, and some external agency is needed to provide this force. The external agency may or may not be in contact with the body. So far so good. But what if a body is moving uniformly (e.g.a skater moving straight with constant speed on a horizontal ice slab) ? Is an external force required to keep a body in uniform motion?

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