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Rotational equilibrium

I am trying to help my brother (in high school) understand how to solve rotational equilibrium problems. What he needs is an explanation on how to approach these problems. I understand each problem is different, but I imagine there must be a general method for solving them. I have put a problem below so that hopefully you could apply the explanation/method to an example to clarify things. Thank you.


1) A uniform bridge 20.0 m long and weighing 4.00x10^5 N is supported by two pillars located 3.00 m from each end. If a 1.96x10^4 N car is parked 8.00 m from one end of the bridge, how much force does each pillar exert?

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Solution Summary

This solution is provided in a 3 page .pdf file as well as a .doc file. It uses weight of the car and bridge to find force using a diagram of the system.