What is the difference between balanced and unbalanced forces?
Balanced forces occur when two opposing forces are equal in size and direction. Unbalanced forces occur when two opposing forces are not equal in size or direction. The result of balanced forces is no change in the object's motion; unbalanced forces result in a change in the object's motion.
Balanced and Unbalanced Forces
Balanced Force: a force in which two forces with opposite directions are equal in magnitude. Unbalanced Force: a force in which two forces with opposite directions are unequal in magnitude. Net Force: the overall force resulting from the combination of two or more forces acting on an object.
Unbalanced forces can act in different directions, not just in opposite directions like balanced forces. The same unbalanced force can cause different motions depending on the type of object it is acting on. Unbalanced forces can cause objects to move in curved paths, unlike balanced forces which can only cause linear motion.
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Can you give an example of a balanced force and an unbalanced force in everyday life?
Work together in pairs: What is the difference between a balanced and an unbalanced force?
Brain break: Draw a funny dinosaur using only three scribbles and a zig-zag line
What is a balanced force?
- Forces that are unopposed
- Forces that are equal in size and opposite in direction
- Forces that cause motion
What happens to an object when balanced forces act upon it?
- It remains at rest or continues moving at a constant speed
- It accelerates
- It comes to a stop
What is an unbalanced force?
- Forces that are not equal in size and opposite in direction
- Forces that cancel each other out
- Forces that are stationary
What happens to an object when unbalanced forces act upon it?
- It accelerates or decelerates
- It remains at rest or moves at a constant speed
- Its mass increases
Which of the following is an example of balanced forces?
- A car accelerating uphill
- A tug-of-war with equally matched teams
- A person pushing against a wall with all their might
Draw the force arrows for a balanced force being applied to this box.
Draw the force arrows for an unbalanced force being applied to this box.