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For horizontal equilibrium

F4 = F2 = 26133 newtons

For vertical equilibrium

F3 = F1 = M*g = 2000kg*9.8m/s^2, or

F3 = 19600 newtons

The magnitude of the force = sqrt(F4^2 + F3^2), or

Magnitude = sqrt(26133^2 + 19600^2), or

Magnitude = 32666 newtons

Therefore, the magnitude of the force is 32666 newtons.

The angle of the force is

angle = atan(19600 newtons/26133 newtons) in degrees

angle = 36.9 degrees north of east

A ladder scenario

A ladder is sitting on a horizontal floor and leaning against a smooth wall. A bucket of paint is hanging from a rung 80-percent up from the bottom of theladder. The parameters are as follows:

  • Length of ladder = L = 5 m
  • Angle between ladder and floor = A = 50 degrees
  • Mass of the bucket of paint = m = 2.5 kg
  • Mass of the ladder = M = 12 kg
  • Coefficient of static friction = u = ?

Part 1

Draw a vector diagram of the forces acting on the ladder.


There are five forces acting on the ladder:

  1. A force directed outward from the wall at the top of the ladder. Label this force F1.
  2. A force pushing straight down due to the mass of the bucket of paint. Label this force F2.
  3. A force pushing straight down due to the mass of the ladder. Label this force F3.
  4. A force at the bottom of the ladder directed toward the wall due to static friction. Label this force F4.
  5. A force at the bottom of the ladder directed straight up due to the weight of the ladder and the bucket of paint. Label this force F5.

Part 2

The ladder is in static equilibrium.

The coefficient of static friction between the ladder and the wall is zero.

What is the minimum possible value for the coefficient of static friction between the ladder and the floor.

F1 = ?

F2 = m*g = 2.5kg * 9.8m/s^2 = 24.5 newtons

F3 = M*g = 12kg*9.8m/s^2 = 117.6 newtons

F4 = F5*u

For vertical equilibrium,

F5 = F2 + F3 = (2.5kg + 12kg)*9.8m/s^2 = 142 newtons

For rotational equilibrium, the sum of the torques about the bottom of the ladder must be zero.

Compute the horizontal distance to the line of action of the weight of the ladder.

X1 = (L/2)*cos(50 degrees), or

X1 = ((5/2)m)*cos(50 degrees), or

X1 = 1.61m

Compute the horizontal distance to the line of action of the weight of the bucket of paint.

X2 = 0.8*5m*cos(50 degrees), or

X2 = 2.57m

Compute the vertical distance to the line of action of the horizontal force at the top of the ladder.

Y1 = 5m*sin(50 degrees), or

Y1 = 3.83m

Compute sum of the torques about the bottom of the ladder.

Y1*F1 - X2*F2 - X1*F3 = 0, or

F1 = (X2*F2 + X1*F3)/Y1, or

F1 = (2.57m*24.5 newtons+ 1.61m*117.6 newtons)/3.83m

F1 = 65.87 newtons

For horizontal equilibrium,

F4 = 65.87 newtons

By substitution,

F4 = F5*u = 65.87 newtons

u = (65.87 newtons)/F5, or

u = (65.87 newtons)/142 newtons, or

u = 0.46

While the coefficient of static friction could be higher than this and still achieve static equilibrium, if the coefficient were any lower, the ladder wouldslide away from the wall.

Repeat the computations

I encourage you to repeat the computations that I have presented in this lesson to confirm that you get the same results. Experiment withthe scenarios, making changes, and observing the results of your changes. Make certain that you can explain why your changes behave as they do.


I will publish a module containing consolidated links to resources on my Connexions web page and will update and add to the list as additional modulesin this collection are published.


This section contains a variety of miscellaneous information.

Housekeeping material
  • Module name: Angular Momentum -- Rotational equilibrium
  • File: Phy1340.htm
  • Revised: 10/02/15
  • Keywords:
    • physics
    • accessible
    • accessibility
    • blind
    • graph board
    • protractor
    • screen reader
    • refreshable Braille display
    • JavaScript
    • trigonometry
    • rotational equilibrium
    • translational equilibrium
    • static equilibrium
    • beam
    • boom
    • crane
    • crate
    • ladder

Financial : Although the openstax CNX site makes it possible for you to download a PDF file for the collection that contains thismodule at no charge, and also makes it possible for you to purchase a pre-printed version of the PDF file, you should beaware that some of the HTML elements in this module may not translate well into PDF.

You also need to know that Prof. Baldwin receives no financial compensation from openstax CNX even if you purchase the PDF version of the collection.

In the past, unknown individuals have copied Prof. Baldwin's modules from cnx.org, converted them to Kindle books, and placed them for sale on Amazon.com showing Prof. Baldwin as the author.Prof. Baldwin neither receives compensation for those sales nor does he know who doesreceive compensation. If you purchase such a book, please be aware that it is a copy of a collection that is freelyavailable on openstax CNX and that it was made and published without the prior knowledge of Prof. Baldwin.

Affiliation : Prof. Baldwin is a professor of Computer Information Technology at Austin Community College in Austin, TX.


Questions & Answers

what is Nano technology ?
Bob Reply
write examples of Nano molecule?
The nanotechnology is as new science, to scale nanometric
nanotechnology is the study, desing, synthesis, manipulation and application of materials and functional systems through control of matter at nanoscale
Is there any normative that regulates the use of silver nanoparticles?
Damian Reply
what king of growth are you checking .?
What fields keep nano created devices from performing or assimulating ? Magnetic fields ? Are do they assimilate ?
Stoney Reply
why we need to study biomolecules, molecular biology in nanotechnology?
Adin Reply
yes I'm doing my masters in nanotechnology, we are being studying all these domains as well..
what school?
biomolecules are e building blocks of every organics and inorganic materials.
anyone know any internet site where one can find nanotechnology papers?
Damian Reply
sciencedirect big data base
Introduction about quantum dots in nanotechnology
Praveena Reply
what does nano mean?
Anassong Reply
nano basically means 10^(-9). nanometer is a unit to measure length.
do you think it's worthwhile in the long term to study the effects and possibilities of nanotechnology on viral treatment?
Damian Reply
absolutely yes
how to know photocatalytic properties of tio2 nanoparticles...what to do now
Akash Reply
it is a goid question and i want to know the answer as well
characteristics of micro business
for teaching engĺish at school how nano technology help us
Do somebody tell me a best nano engineering book for beginners?
s. Reply
there is no specific books for beginners but there is book called principle of nanotechnology
what is fullerene does it is used to make bukky balls
Devang Reply
are you nano engineer ?
fullerene is a bucky ball aka Carbon 60 molecule. It was name by the architect Fuller. He design the geodesic dome. it resembles a soccer ball.
what is the actual application of fullerenes nowadays?
That is a great question Damian. best way to answer that question is to Google it. there are hundreds of applications for buck minister fullerenes, from medical to aerospace. you can also find plenty of research papers that will give you great detail on the potential applications of fullerenes.
what is the Synthesis, properties,and applications of carbon nano chemistry
Abhijith Reply
Mostly, they use nano carbon for electronics and for materials to be strengthened.
is Bucky paper clear?
carbon nanotubes has various application in fuel cells membrane, current research on cancer drug,and in electronics MEMS and NEMS etc
so some one know about replacing silicon atom with phosphorous in semiconductors device?
s. Reply
Yeah, it is a pain to say the least. You basically have to heat the substarte up to around 1000 degrees celcius then pass phosphene gas over top of it, which is explosive and toxic by the way, under very low pressure.
Do you know which machine is used to that process?
how to fabricate graphene ink ?
for screen printed electrodes ?
What is lattice structure?
s. Reply
of graphene you mean?
or in general
in general
Graphene has a hexagonal structure
On having this app for quite a bit time, Haven't realised there's a chat room in it.
how did you get the value of 2000N.What calculations are needed to arrive at it
Smarajit Reply
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Source:  OpenStax, Accessible physics concepts for blind students. OpenStax CNX. Oct 02, 2015 Download for free at https://legacy.cnx.org/content/col11294/1.36
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