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# FORCES IN SPACE

## (Noncoplanar System of Forces)

FS - 1
Forces in space
A Force in space: A Force is said to be in space if its line of
action makes an angle , and with respect to rectangular
co-ordinate axes X, Y and Z respectively as shown the Fig. 1.
F Fig. 1. A Force in space
FS - 2
Forces in space
Noncoplanar system of forces (Forces in
Space) and Their Classifications
System of forces which do not lie in a single plane is called
noncoplanar system of forces(Forces in space ). A typical
noncoplanar system of forces (forces in space) is shown in
the Fig. 2. below

Fig. 2 Forces in space (noncoplanar system of forces)
FS - 3
Forces in space

Noncoplanar system of forces(Forces in space) can be broadly
classified into three categories. They are

1. Concurrent noncoplanar system of forces
2. Nonconcurrent noncoplanar system of forces
3. Noncoplanar parallel system of forces

FS - 4
Forces in space
1. Concurrent noncoplanar system of forces: Forces which
meet at a point with their lines of action do not lie in a plane
are called Concurrent noncoplanar system of forces. A
typical system of Concurrent noncoplanar system of forces is
shown in the Fig.3.

Fig. 3. Concurrent noncoplanar system of forces
FS - 5
Forces in space
2. Nonconcurrent noncoplanar system of forces: Forces which
do not meet at a point and their lines of action do not lie in a
plane, such forces are called Nonconcurrent noncoplanar
system of forces. A typical system of nonconcurrent
noncoplanar system of forces is shown in the Fig.4.

Fig. 4. Nonconcurrent noncoplanar system of forces
FS - 6
Forces in space
3. Noncoplanar parallel system of forces: If lines of action of all
the forces in a system are parallel and they do not lie in a plane
such a system is called Non-coplanar parallel system of
forces. If all the forces are pointing in one direction then they
are called Like parallel forces otherwise they are called unlike
parallel forces as shown in the Fig.5.

Fig. 5 Noncoplanar parallel system of forces
FS - 7
Forces in space
Fig. 6. Resolving a force in space into rectangular components
Rectangular components of a force in space
FS - 8
Rectangular components of a force in space
In the Fig.6(a) a force F is acting at the origin O of the system
of rectangular coordinate axes X,Y,Z. Consider OBAC plane
passing through the force F. This plane makes an angle with
respect to XOY plane. Force F makes an angle
y
with
respect to Y-axis.

Forces in space
Fig.6(a)
FS - 9
Rectangular components of a force in space

In the Fig.6(b), the force F is resolved in the vertical (Y- axis) and
horizontal direction (X axis) as
F
y
= F Cos
y
and
F
h
= F Sin
y
respectively.
Forces in space
Fig.6(b)
FS - 10
Rectangular components of a force in space

In the Fig 6(c) the horizontal component F
h
is again resolved in the X and
Z axes directions. These components are
F
x
= F
h
cos = F sin
y
cos
F
z
= F
h
Sin = F sin
y
sin
Forces in space
Fig.6(c)
FS - 11
Now applying Pythagorean theorem to the triangles OAB
and OCD
F
2
= (OA)
2
= OB
2
+ BA
2
= F
y
2
+F
h
2
----------------(1)

F
h
2
= OC
2
= OD
2
+ DC
2
= F
x
2
+F
z
2
----------------(2)

Substituting equation (2) into the equation (1), we get

F
2
= F
x
2
+F
y
2
+ F
z
2

F = F
x
2
+ F
y
2
+ F
z
2
----------------(3)

Forces in space
FS - 12
Forces in space
The relationship existing between the force F and its three components Fx,
Fy, Fz is more easily visualized if a box having Fx, Fy, Fz for edges is drawn
as shown below. The force F is then represented by the original OA of this
box.
Fig. 7 Relationship between Force F and its components Fx, Fy and Fz
FS - 13
From the above Figure (Fig. 7)

F
x
= F Cos
x
, F
y
= F Cos
y
, F
z
= F Cos
z
------------(4)

Where
x
,
y
,
z
are the angles formed by the force F with X, Y, Z axes respectively.
F
x
,F
y
,F
z
are the rectangular components of the force F in the directions of X, Y, Z
axes respectively.

Cos
x
= F
x
/F; Cos
y
= F
y
/F; Cos
z
= F
z
/F

Substituting equation (4) into the equation (3), we get

F = F
x
2
+ F
y
2
+ F
z
2

F = F
2
Cos
2

x
+ F
2
Cos
2

y
+ F
2
Cos
2

z

F
2
= F
2
( Cos
2

x
+ Cos
2

y
+ Cos
2

z
)

1 = Cos
2

x
+ Cos
2

y
+ Cos
2

z
-------------(5)

Forces in space
FS - 14

d
x
= d Cos
x
, d
y
= d Cos
y
,
d
z
= d Cos
z

----(6)
d = d
x
2
+ d
y
2
+ d
z
2

---(7)
Dividing member by
member the relations (4) and
(6), we obtain

F
x
/d
x
= F
y
/d
y
= F
z
/d
z
= F/d
----------------------------(8)
Forces in space
Force Defined by its magnitude and two points on its line of action

Fig 8
FS - 15
Forces in space
Resultant of concurrent forces in Space:-
Resolve all the forces into their rectangular components in X, Y and Z axes directions.
Adding algebraically all the horizontal components in the x direction gives

R
x
= F
x
,
Similarly adding algebraically all the components in y and z directions yield the
following relations
R
y
= F
y
,
R
z
= F
z

Thus magnitude of resultant

R = R
x
2
+ R
y
2
+ R
z
2

Angles
x
,
y
,
z
resultant forms with the axes of coordinates are obtained by

R
R
Cos
R
R
Cos
R
R
Cos
z
z
y
y
x
x
; ;
FS - 16
Problems:
(1) A tower guy wire is anchored by means of a bolt at A is shown in the following
Figure. The tension in the wire is 6000N. Determine
(a) The components F
x
, F
y
, F
z
of the forces acting on the bolt.
(b) The angles
x
,
y
,
z
defining the direction of the force.
Forces in space
FS - 17
Solution: (a) Here d
x
= 50m, d
y
= 200m, d
z
= -100m

Total distance A to B

d = d
x
2
+ d
y
2
+ d
z
2

= (50)
2
+ (200)
2
+ (-100)
2

= 229.13 m

Using the equation (8) F
x
/d
x
= F
y
/d
y
= F
z
/d
z
= F/d

F
x
= d
x
. (F/d) = (50 x 6000)/ 229.13 = 1309.3 N

F
y
= d
y
. (F/d) = (200 x 6000)/ 229.13 = 5237.20 N

F
z
= d
z
. (F/d) = (-100 x 6000)/ 229.13 = -2618.6 N
Forces in space
FS - 18
(b) Directions of the force:

Cos
x
= d
x
/d ,
x
= Cos
1
(50/229.13) = 77.4

y
= Cos
1
(d
y
/d) = Cos
1
(200/229.13) = 29.2

z
= Cos
1
(d
z
/d) = Cos
1
(-100/229.13) = 115.88
Forces in space
FS - 19
Problem(2) Determine (a) the x , y and z components of the 250 N
force acting as shown below
(b) the angles
x
,
y
,
z
that the force forms with the coordinate
axes.
Forces in space
FS - 20
F
h
= 250 Cos60 = 125 N F
y
= 250 Sin60 = 216.5 N
F
x
= 125 Cos25 = 113.29 N F
z
= 125Sin25 = -52.83 N

x
= Cos
1
( F
x
/F) = Cos
1
(113.29/250) = 63

y
= Cos
1
( F
y
/F) = Cos
1
(216.5/250) = 30

z
= Cos
1
( F
z
/F) = Cos
1
(-52.83/250) = 102.11
o

Components of 250 N in the x, y, z axes directions are

F
x
= 113.29N F
y
= 216.5 N F
z
= -52.83N
Forces in space
FS - 21
Problem 3. Find the resultant of the system of forces as shown
below
Forces in space
FS - 22
Solution

Components of Force F
1
= 3000 N:

Fy
1
= 3000 x Cos40
o
= 2298.13 N
Fh
1
= 3000 x Sin40
o
= 1928.36 N
Fx
1
= 1928.36 x Cos30
o
=1670 N
Fz
1
= 1928.36 x Sin30
o
= 964.18 N
Forces in space
FS - 23
Components of Force F
2
= 2000 N:

Fy
2
= 2000 x Cos20 = 1879.39 N
Fh
2
= 2000 x Sin20 = 684.04 N
Fx
2
= 684.04 x Sin35 = 392.35 N
Fz
2
= 684.04 x Cos35 = 560.33N

Forces in space
FS - 24
R
x
= F
x
= Fx
1
+ Fx
2
= 1670 392.35 = 1277.65
R
y
= F
y
= Fy
1
+ Fy
2
= 2298.13 + 1879.39 = 4177.52 N
R
z
= F
z
= Fz
1
+ Fz
2
= 964.18 + 560.33 = 1524.51 N

Resultant R = R
x
2
+ R
y
2
+R
z
2

= 1277.65
2
+4177.52
2
+1524.51
2

= 4626.9 N
Its inclinations with respect to x, y and z axes are
calculated as

x
= Cos
1
(1277.65 /4626.9) = 73 58' 13.1"

y
= Cos
1
(4177.52/4626.9) = 25 27'

z
= Cos
1
(1526.51/4626.9) = 70
o
4536
Forces in space
FS - 25
Problem 4. In the Fig shown below, the forces in the cables AB and AC
are 100 kN and 150 kN respectively. At the joint A loading is as
shown in the Fig. Find the resultant of system of forces in space and its
inclination with rectangular coordinates x,y and z axes.
Forces in space
FS - 26
Solution: Force in the cable AB = 100 kN

Force in the cable AC=150 kN

For the cable AB
dx = -20 m
dy = 15m
dz = 5m
d
AB
= dx
2
+dy
2
+ dz
2

= (-20)
2
+(15)
2
+ (5)
2
= 650 = 25.5 m

For the cable AC
dx = -20 m
dy = 25m
dz = -10m
d
Ac
= (-20)
2
+(25)
2
+ (-10)
2
= 1125 = 33.54 m
FS - 27
Forces in space
For the cable AB (1)
Fx
1
/dx
1
= Fy
1
/dy
1
= Fz
1
/dz
1
= F/d
Fx
1
/-20 = Fy
1
/15 = Fz
1
/5 = 100/25.5
Fx
1
= -78.41 kN
Fy
1
= 58.82 kN
Fz
1
= 19.61 kN

For the Cable AC (2)

Fx
2
/-20 = Fy
2
/25 = Fz
2
/-10 = 150/33.54

Fx
2
= - 89.45 kN
Fy
2
= 111.81 kN
Fz
2
= - 44.72 kN
Forces in space
FS - 28
Component of force 60 kN

F
x3
= 60 x Cos(70) = 20.52 kN
F
y3
= 60 x Cos(30
o
) = 51.96 kN
F
z3
= 60 x Cos(11123)= - 21.88 kN

Component of the force 50KN

F
x4
= 50 kN
F
y4
= 0
F
z4
= 0

Forces in space
FS - 29
Algebraic summation of Rectangular Components in X, Y and Z
axes directions yield:
Rx = Fx = Fx
1
+ Fx
2
+ Fx
3
+ Fx
4

= -78.43 - 89.45 + 20.52 + 50
= -97.36 kN
Ry = Fy = Fy
1
+ Fy
2
+ Fy
3
+ Fy
4

= 58.82 + 111.81 + 51.96 + 0
= 222.59 kN

Rz = Fz = Fz
1
+ Fz
2
+ Fz
3
+ Fz
4

= 19.61 44.72 21.88 + 0
= -46.99 kN

Resultant R = Rx
2
+ Ry
2
+ Rz
2

= (-97.36)
2
+ (222.59)
2
+ (-46.99)
2

= 247.45 kN

Forces in space
FS - 30
Inclinations of the resultant with X,Y and Z axes:

x
= Cos
-1
(R
x
/ R) = Cos
-1
(-97.36/247.45) = 113 10

y
= Cos
-1
(R
y
/ R) = Cos
-1
(222.59/247.45) = 25 54

z
= Cos
-1
(R
z
/ R) = Cos
-1
(-46.99/247.45) = 100 56 47

Check:

Cos
2

x
+ Cos
2

y
+ Cos
2

z
= 1
Cos
2
(11310) + Cos
2
(2554) + Cos
2
(10056) = 1

1 = 1

Hence OK
Forces in space
FS - 31
Problem 5. a) Forces F
1
, F
2
, and F
3
pass through the origin and
points whose coordinates are given. Determine the
resultant of the system of forces.

F
1
= 20 kN, (3,-2,1)
F
2
= 35 kN, (-2,4,0)
F
3
= 25 kN, (1,2,-3)

Forces in space
FS - 32
Forces in space
Solution:
FS - 33
Force F
1
= 20 kN
d = 3
2
+ (-2)
2
+ 12 = 14 = 3.74
Cos
x1
= d
x
/ d = 3/3.74 = 0.802
Cos
y1
= -2/3.74 = -0.535; Cos
z1
= 1/3.74 = 0.267

Force F
2
= 35 kN
d = (-2)
2
+ 4
2
+0 = 20 = 4.47
Cos
x2
= -2/4.47 = -0.45
Cos
y2
= 4/4.47 = 0.9; Cos
z2
= 0
Force F
3
= 25 kN
d = (1)
2
+ 2
2
+(-3)
2
= 14 = 3.74
Cos
x3
= 1/3.74 = 0.267
Cos
y3
= 2/3.74 = 0.535; Cos
z3
= -3/3.74 = -0.802
Forces in space
FS - 34
Summation of the rectangular components in X, Y and Z axes directions
yield:
R
x
= F
x
= 20 x 0.802 + 35 x (-0.45) +25 x 0.267 = 6.965 kN
R
y
= F
y
= 20 x (-0.535) + 35 x 0.9 + 25 x 0.535 = 34.175 kN
R
z
= F
z
= 20 x 0.267 + 35 x 0 + 25 x (-0.802) = -14.71 kN

Resultant R = Rx
2
+ Ry
2
+ Rz
2

= 6.965
2
+ 34.175
2
+ (-14.71)
2

= 37.85 kN

Inclination of the resultant R with respect to X, Y and Z axes are
calculated as

x
= Cos
1
(R
x
/ R) = Cos
-1
(6.965/37.85 ) = 79.4

y
= Cos
1
(R
y
/R) = Cos
-1
(34.175/37.85) = 25.46

z
= Cos
1
(R
z
/R) = Cos
-1
(-14.71/37.85) = 112.87

Forces in space
FS - 35
Forces in space
Equilibrium of Concurrent non-coplanar system of forces:
When a rigid body subjected to concurrent noncoplanar system of forces
F
1
, F
2
. ..F
N
as shown in the Fig. given below, is in equilibrium, then
algebraic summation of all the components of the forces in three mutually
perpendicular directions must be equal to zero.
Fig. A rigid body subjected to concurrent
noncoplanar system of forces
i.e. F
x
= 0
F
y
= 0
F
z
= 0 (1)
Above equations represent the static
conditions of equilibrium for concurrent
noncoplanar system of forces
FS - 36
Problem (1) Find the forces in the rods AB , AC and AO subjected to
Forces in
space

FS - 37
Solution:

For the cable AB:

d
x1
= 0 - 4 = - 4
d
y1
= 8 - 0 = 8
d
z1
= 15 0 =15

d
1
= (-4)
2
+(8)
2
+(15)
2
= 17.46 m

F
x1
/-4 = F
y1
/8 = F
z1
/15 = F
AB
/17.46

F
x1
= -0.23F
AB
,
F
y1
= 0.46F
AB
,
F
z1
= 0.86F
AB
Forces in space
FS - 38
For the Cable AC:
dx
2
= 0 - 4 = -4m
dy
2
= 8 - 0 = 8m
dz
2
= -20 0 = -20m

d
2
= (-4)
2
+(8)
2
+(-20)
2
= 480 = 21.91m
F
x2
/-4 = F
y2
/8 = F
z2
/-20 = F
AC
/21.91
F
x2
= -0.18F
AC
, F
y2
= 0.365F
Ac
, F
z2
= -0.91F
Ac

For the Force 120 N:
F
x3
= 120 N, F
y3
= 0, F
z3
= 0

For the force Fx
4
= 300 N:
Fx
4
= 0, Fy
4
= -300N, Fz
4
= 0
Forces in space
FS - 39
Conditions of Equilibrium
Fx = 0, Fy = 0, Fz = 0

Considering Fx = 0
Fx
1
+ Fx
2
+ Fx
3
+ Fx
4
+ Fx
5
= 0
-F
-0.23F 0.18F
AC
+ 120 + 0 = 0
F
+ 0.23F
AB
+ 0.183F
AC
= 120 ----------------------(1)

Fy = 0
0.46F
AB
+ 0.365F
AC
+ 0 +0 300 = 0
0.46F
AB
+ 0.365F
AC
= 300 ------------------------------(2)

Fz = 0
0.86 F
AB
0.91 F
AC
+ 0 = 0 -----------------------(3)

Forces in space
FS - 40

Solving Equations (1), (2) and (3), we get,
F
AB
= 372.675 N; F
AC
= 352.25 N ; F
AO
= - 30.18 N

Force in the rod AB , F
AB
= 372.675 N (Tensile)
Force in the rod AC, F
AC
= 352.25 N (Tensile)
Force in the rod AO, F
AO
= 30.18 N (Compressive)

Forces in space
FS - 41

2) Three cables are connected at D and support, the 400
kN load as shown in the Fig given below. Determine the
tensions in each cable
Forces in space
FS - 42
Let F
DA
, F
DB
and F
DC
are the forces in the cables AD, BD,
and CD respectively.

For Cable DA:

dx
1
= (0 3) = -3m
dy
1
= (6 - 4) =2 m
dz
1
= (6 0 = 6 m

d
= dx
2
+ dy
2
+ dz
2

d
= (-3)
2
+ (2)
2
+ (6)
2
= 9 + 4 + 36 = 7 m

Fx
1
/dx
1
= Fy
1
/dy
1
= Fz
1
/dz
1
= F
DA
/d
DA

Fx
1
/(-3) = Fy
1
/2 = Fz
1
/6 = F
DA
/7

Fx
1
= -0.43F
DA
, Fy
1
=0.286F
DA
, Fz
1
= 0.857F
DA

Forces in space
FS - 43
For Cable DB:

dx
2
= (0 3) = -3m
dy
2
= (6 - 4) =2 m
dz
2
= (-6 0 = -6 m
d
BD
= d2 = (-3)
2
+ (2)
2
+ (-6)
2
= 49 = 7 m

Fx
2
/dx
2
= Fy
2
/dy
2
= Fz
2
/dz
2
= F
DB
/d
DB

Fx
2
/(-3) = Fy
2
/2 = Fz
2
/-6 = F
DB
/7

Fx
2
= -0.43F
DB
,
Fy
2
=0.286F
DB
,
Fz
2
= -0.857F
DB

Forces in space
FS - 44
For Cable DC:
dx
3
(0 3) = -3m
dy
3
= (0- 4) = -4m
dz
3
= (0 0 = 0m

d
DC
= d
3
= (-3)
2
+ (-4) + (0)
2

= 9 + 16
= 5m

Fx
3
/dx
3
= Fy
3
/dy
3
= Fz
3
/dz
3
= F
DC
/d
DC

Fx
3
/(-3) = Fy
3
/-4 = Fz
3
/0 = F
DC
/5

Fx
3
= -0.6F
DC
,
Fy
3
=-0.8F
DC
,
Fz
3
= 0
Forces in space
FS - 45
For the force 400KN
dx
4
= 12m
dy
4
= -4m
dz
4
= 3m
d
4
= d
400
= (12)
2
+ (4) + (3)
2

= 144 +16 + 9
= 69 = 13m
Fx
4
/dx
4
= Fy
4
/dy
4
= Fz
4
/dz
4
= F
400
/d
4

Fx
4
/(12) = Fy
4
/-4 = Fz
4
/3 = 400/13

Fx
4
= 369.23 kN,
Fy
4
= -123.08 kN,
Fz
4
= +92.31 kN
Forces in space
FS - 46
For Equilibrium, the algebraic summation of resolved
component in a particular direction is equal to zero.

i.e. Fx = 0 -------------(1)
Fy = 0 ------------- (2)
Fz = 0 --------------(3)

(1) Fx = Fx1 + Fx2 + Fx3 + Fx4 = 0
+ 0.43F
DA
+ 0.43F
DB
+ 0.6F
DC
= 369.23 ---------(1)
+ 0.286F
DA
+ 0.286F
DB
0.8F
DC
= 123.08 ------(2)
+ 0.857F
DA
- 0.857F
DB
+ 0 = 92.31 ------------(3)

Forces in space
FS - 47
Solving equations (1), (2) and (3), we get
F
DB
= 304.1kN

F
DA
= 411.8 kN
F
DC
= 102 kN
Forces in space
FS - 48
Forces in space
Practice Questions
1. A tower guy wire is anchored by means of a bolt at A as shown below.
The tension in the wire is 2500 N. Determine (a) the components F
x
, F
y

and F
z
of the force acting on the bolt, (b) the angles x, y, z defining
the direction of the force
(Ans: F
x
= -1060 N , F
y
= 2120 N, F
z
= + 795 N
x = 115.1
o
; y= 32.0
o
; z= 71.5
o
)
FS - 49
Forces in space Practice Questions
2. Determine (a) x, y and z the components of the force 500 N in the below
Figure. (b) the angles x, y, z that the force forms with the coordinate
axes
(Ans: F
x
= + 278 N , F
y
= + 383 N, F
z
= + 160.7
N
x = 56.2
o
; y= 40.0
o
; z= 71.3
o
)
FS - 50
Forces in space Practice Questions
3. In order to move a wrecked truck, two cables are attached at A and
pulled by winches B and C as shown. Knowing that the tension in the
cable AB is 10 kN, determine the components of the force exerted by the
cable AB on the truck

(Ans: F
x
= -6.30 kN , F
y
= 6.06 kN, F
z
= + 4.85
kN)
FS - 51
Forces in space Practice Questions
4. A 200 kg cylinder is hung by means of two cables AB and AC, which are
attached to the top of a vertical wall. A horizontal force P perpendicular
to the wall holds the cylinder in the position shown. Determine the
magnitude of the force P and the tension in each cable
(Ans: P = 235 N , T
AB
= 1401 N, T
AC
= + 1236 N
)

FS - 52
Forces in space Practice Questions
5. Three cables are connected at A, where the forces P and Q are applied as
shown. Determine the tension in each cable when P = 0 and Q = 7.28
kN
(Ans: T
AB
= 2.88 kN , T
AC
= 5.76 kN, T
= 3.6
kN)
FS - 53
Forces in space
6. A container of weight w = 400 N is supported by cables AB and AC
which are tied to ring A. Knowing that Q = 0, determine (a) the
magnitude of the force P which must be applied to the ring to maintain
the container in the position shown in figure below, (b) the
corresponding the values of the tension in cables AB and AC
(Ans: P = 138 N ,
T
AB
= 270N,
T
AC
= 196N )
Practice Questions
FS - 54
Forces in space
7. A container supported by three cables as shown below. Determine the
weight of the container, knowing that the tension in the cable AB is 4 kN
Ans: 9.32 kN
Practice Questions
FS - 55
Forces in space
8. Determine the resultant of the two forces shown below.
Practice Questions
(Ans: R = 498 N ,
x = 68.9
o
; y= 26.3
o
; z= 75.1
o
)
FS - 56
Forces in space
9. A container of weight W = 1165 N is supported by three cables as shown
below. Determine the tension in each cable.
Ans: T
AB
= 500 N
T
AC
= 459 N
T