Jump to content

ZZ's Blog

Sign in to follow this  
  • entries
  • comments
  • views




The other day I went to do my weekly chores, one of which was picking up and setting new mouse traps if needed. It turns out that today was an unlucky day for a certain rodent. I grabbed myself a new mousetrap after cleaning up the carnage from before, and began to set it. Now that I've set many before it does not seem too hard anymore, but it still requires a lot of care when handling one, since it could seriously injure an appendage if set off accidentally. I thought about it and realized that a mousetrap is really just a balancing act with equal torques on each side (F*r = F*r). The way a mousetrap is made it uses a two-lever system, in such a way that a small force exerted on the bait will trigger the trap and thus kill its worthy victim. The arm lengths have much different lengths, in that L1<<L2 and d1<<d2.  Therefore, even just a tiny extra force at the bait will be able to trigger the trap. This is why it takes so much less work to fix the trap than to set it off.


Recommended Comments

There are no comments to display.

Add a comment...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Terms of Use

The pages of APlusPhysics.com, Physics in Action podcasts, and other online media at this site are made available as a service to physics students, instructors, and others. Their use is encouraged and is free of charge. Teachers who wish to use materials either in a classroom demonstration format or as part of an interactive activity/lesson are granted permission (and encouraged) to do so. Linking to information on this site is allowed and encouraged, but content from APlusPhysics may not be made available elsewhere on the Internet without the author's written permission.

Copyright Notice

APlusPhysics.com, Silly Beagle Productions and Physics In Action materials are copyright protected and the author restricts their use to online usage through a live internet connection. Any downloading of files to other storage devices (hard drives, web servers, school servers, CDs, etc.) with the exception of Physics In Action podcast episodes is prohibited. The use of images, text and animations in other projects (including non-profit endeavors) is also prohibited. Requests for permission to use such material on other projects may be submitted in writing to info@aplusphysics.com. Licensing of the content of APlusPhysics.com for other uses may be considered in the future.

  • Create New...