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Force
If we exert the same force on several objects with different mass, we will observe different
accelerations. For example, one can throw a baseball significantly further (and faster) than a ball
of similar size made of lead. The unit of force is the Newton (N), and a force of 1 N is defined as
the force that when applied to an object with a mass of 1 kg, produces an acceleration of 1 m/s
2
.
If we apply a force equal to 2 N, the corresponding acceleration is 2 m/s
2
.
Experiments have shown that the force is a vector. This can be shown by demonstrating that the
force has a magnitude and a direction. Suppose, we apply a force of 3 N to our standard object
(mass 1 kg). The force is applied such that the resulting acceleration of 3 m/s
2
is upwards
(positive y-direction). In addition, we apply a force of 4 N in the horizontal direction (this force
is applied such that the standard object will accelerate with an acceleration of 4 m/s
2
in the
direction of the positive x-axis if this is the only force applied). The situation is illustrated in
Figure 5.1. If both forces are acting on the standard mass simultaneously, the acceleration of the

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