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Engineering Mechanics Tutorial – 3

Topic: Principle of virtual work
Batch 1: Problems: 1, 4, 5
Batch 2: Problems: 2, 3, 5
Due Date for HW: 31/01/2018 (Batch-1) and 02/01/2018 (Batch-2)

1. Determine the required force P (in the figure below)

needed to maintain equilibrium of the scissors
linkage when = 60 . The spring is unstretched
when = 30 . Neglect the mass of the links.

2. The scissors linkage is subjected to a force of

P = 150 N. Determine the angle θ for
equilibrium. The spring is unstretched at =
0 . Neglect the mass of the links.

3. In the design of the claw for the remote-

action actuator, a clamping force C is
developed as a result of the tension P in the
control rod. Express C interms of P for the
configuration shown, where the jaws are

4. The designers of lamp mechanisms, such as that shown in the figure, usually
rely on joint friction to aid in
maintaining static
equilibrium. For the present
problem, ignore friction at
all the joints. If the mass of
the lamp fixture is 0.6 kg
with mass centre at G,
determine the spring force
Fs and Moment at C Mc
necessary for equilibrium in the position shown.
5. An inventor devises a springboard playground toy for children which consists
of a tough, lightweight plastic board attached to a heavy steel frame by three
springs. The free lengths of all three springs
are 300 mm and the spring constants are =
= 17 ; = 21 / . In order to test the
strength of the connections, the inventor, who
weighs 620 N, climbs onto the board and
stands at several places. As she stands at the
location shown, what forces are transmitted to
the frame connections? What is the central
vertical deflection of the board and the angle
the board make with the horizontal?

Hint: Consider two degrees of freedom- one is

the displacement in vertical deflection of the
centre of the board and the second is the angle of rotation of the board it makes
with the horizontal.

6. Design criteria require that the robot exert the 90 N force on the part as shown
while inserting a cylindrical
part into the circular hole.
Servomotors at A, B and C
generate the required
torque/moments. Determine
the moment about points A, B
and C for the static
equilibrium as shown in the
given position.

7. The gear train shown is used to transmit motion to the vertical rack D. If an input
torque M is applied to gear, what force F is
required to establish equilibrium of the system?
Gear C is keyed to the same shaft as gear B.
Gears A, E, B and C have pitch diameters
, , , and respectively. Neglect the
weight of the rack. From your analysis try to
comment on the use of the intermediate gear E.
8. The speed-reduction gear between an airplane engine and the propeller usually
is of the planetary type. The
engine is directly coupled to a
central gear A, which meshes
with a number of planet gears B,
C and D. The planet gears mesh
with an internal gear E, which
does not rotate, but which is
rigidly mounted to the engine
frame and hence to the airplane.
The planet-gear shafts fit in the
bearings in a spider S, which has
a central bearing fitting around the shaft of the centre gear and engine A. It is
to this spider that the airplane propeller is attached. Thus the engine shaft A is
free to rotate inside the spider bearing S. The sketch shows the case of three
plane gears, with diameters , = = , for the gears A, B, C, D and
E respectively.
If a torque moment is applied to the engine shaft, what torque must set
on the propeller D and on the engine frame C for static equilibrium?

9. (Bonus problem, Optional):

In principle, for a system in static equilibrium either the principle of
virtual work or the principle of force component resolution for static
equilibrium can be used to solve the problem. For each of the
problems in Tutorial 2, use principle of virtual work to solve the
problem. Identify under what conditions (Which kind of problems) it
is beneficial to use method of virtual work rather than analysing the
problem using equations of static equilibrium.