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Two springs can be combined in series or in parallel. Find the force constant of each combination.

SEE ATTACHMENT #1 for a diagram of the springs and both arrangements.

Spring A has force constant kA= 60 nt/m. Spring B has force constant kB= 40 nt/m.
The two springs attached end to end form a series combination with force constant Ks.
The two springs attached side by side so that a force applied to the ends stretches both springs, form a parallel combination with force constant Kp.

PART a. Find Ks, the force constant of the series combination.

PART b. Find Kp, the force constant of the parallel combination.


Solution Preview

The general relationship between applied force and deformation of a perfectly elastic object such as a spring is:
(1) F = k x, in which F is the force applied to stretch or compress the spring, x is the amount of stretch or compression, and k is its 'force constant'.

Step 1.
A solution best begins with a careful diagram of the event. Fig. 1 in ATTACHMENT #1 shows that since the force constants are different, the springs' stretch ...

Solution Summary

The force constant of the series and parallel combinations are examined. In a step by step solution, the problem is explained and solved.