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Physics of Snow Plows



Last week Rochester experienced a pretty heavy snow storm. Sadly, irondequoit was one of the only schools that didn't get a snow day. During the snow storm, I noticed a lot of snow plows hit the streets. Particularly, I noticed how the snow plows effectively get the snow off of the road. They have to angle their snow plows away from the center of the road in order to apply a force to the snow that has a component towards the sidewalks.  If instead they did not angle their plows, the snow would simply be pushed forward and not off of the streets because the force that the plow applies to the snow has no component towards the sidewalk. By exerting a force towards the sidewalk, the snow accelerates off of the road because of Newton's second law. 


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