Practice!

Sample Problem

In the diagram, M = 6 kg and m = 4 kg. Assume that the tabletop is frictionless. Determine the acceleration of the blocks once they are released from rest. (Round to the nearest tenth digit)

m/s2

Solution

The tension of the cord is the same everywhere on the cord.

The accelerations of the two masses are the same.

T = ma

Mg – T = Ma

So

Mg – ma = Ma

a = Mg ÷ (m + M)

a = (6 × 9.8) ÷ (4 + 6)

a = 5.9 m/s2