Exploration 11.1: Torque

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Drag the tip of the force arrow (position is given in meters and force is given in newtons). The red arrow is the radius, on which the force acts, and the dark green arrow is the force. The light green arrow also represents the force and is there to help illustrate the angle between r and F.  Restart.

  1. When is the cross product zero?

  2. What is the angle between r and F that goes in r F sin(θ)?

  3. Is there anything missing in this representation of the torque?

  4. Does the assignment of r and F matter? In other words, if r was F and F was r, would the torque be the same?

Exploration authored by Mario Belloni and Wolfgang Christian.
HTML updated for JavaScript by Ricky Davidson.
Physlets were developed at Davidson College and converted from Java to JavaScript using the SwingJS system developed at St. Olaf College.