15 List of Examples of Tension Force


Examples of tension force help us to explain how the tension force is transmitted through any flexible connectors such as rope, cable, wire, string, or chain. The article discusses such examples of tension force which are listed below: 

Read more about Types of Forces exists around us.

Pulling a Rope

“You can’t push a rope”- the phrase the summed up the production of tension force. For the apparent reason, when we try to push one of the flexible connectors like rope, it will go slack. Instead, when we pull a rope, some tension will build on the rope in reaction.

The Latin meaning of the word “tension” is ‘to stretch“. In other words, a properly stretch rope after pulling from both ends possesses a tension force. The tension force acts along the length of the rope to carry the applied pull force to its other end of the rope.  

Tension Force in Rope
Examples of Tension Force
– Pulling a Rope (credit: istockphoto)

Playground Swing

When the children sit on the playground swing and start swinging, it applies downward pull force on the cable. Similarly, the pivot applies upward pull on the cables.

Since the seats and pivot stretch the cables – it generates tension force that supports the cables during swinging.

Tension Force in Playground Swing
Examples of Tension Force
– Playground Swing (credit: shutterstock)

Rock Climbing

The climbing equipment like rope and the pulley encourage the adventurer people to climb the giant mountain safely.

Firstly, a technical climber does free climbing to a certain height and fixes the rope through the carabiner, which helps the other member climb the mountain quickly. The pulling force acted downward due to the climber’s weight, whereas another pulling force acted upward due to the carabiner.

The two forces at the rope’s ends create the tension force along the rope that carries the climber’s weight.

Tension Force in Rock Climbing Ropes
Examples of Tension Force
– Rock Climbing (credit: shutterstock)

Simple Pendulum

The massive bob swinging from its equilibrium position causes a tension force on the string which holding the bob from the rigid support.

Here, the downward pull on the string is due to the bob’s weight, while the upward pull is from the rigid support which resisting the string’s tug. Therefore, tension force acts along with the string’s length and equally on both objects at its ends – bob and rigid support.

Tension Force in String of Pendulum
Examples of Tension Force
– Simple Pendulum (credit: shutterstock)

Read more about Rolling Friction.

Pulling a Bucket from Well

In the activity of pulling a bucket filled with water from a well, ropes and pulley are used.

The rope’s one end is tied to the bucket’s handle, whereas the other is passed through the pulley, which pulls by the person. Since the ropes get stretched due to the external pull forces by the bucket’s weight and pulley, the tension force is generated on the rope.

The person does not directly contact a bucket, but the rope becomes a medium to transfer the tension force indirectly to the bucket that pulls it out of the well.

Tension Force in the Wheel Rope
Examples of Tension Force
– Pulling a Bucket from Well (credit: shutterstock)

Tug of War

The primary requirement to play the tug of war is the stretched rope that employs the tension force.

As per the game rule, when two teams start pulling ropes towards their side, tension force develops from both ends because of stretched ropes.

  • If forces from both ends are equally balanced, it causes the same tension forces at the center of the rope.
  • If forces are unbalanced, it causes different tension forces, and teams who apply maximum pull force than others – ultimately win the game.
Tension Force in Ropes of Tug of War
Examples of Tension Force
– Tug of War (credit: shutterstock)

Gyming

In Lat Pull Down Machine, the weights attached to one end of a string offer pull force, whereas the pull force on another end is exerted when the person holds it with the holder’s help.

The coupled of pulled forces from both ends of string generates the tension force – used to stretch the body muscles.

Tension Force in Gyming Equipement
Examples of Tension Force
Gyming (credit: shutterstock)

Read more about Work Done.

Tent

While setting the tent on the mountaintop, it is pitched into the ground with the help of ropes.

During the heavy winds, the tent is continuously pulled along with ropes. Therefore, the stretched ropes produced the tension force, which transmitted to both ends and held the tent to the ground in the heavy wind.

Tension Force in Ropes of Tent
Examples of Tension Force
– Tent (credit: shutterstock)

Suspension Bridge

The suspension bridge is the bridge supported by a network of cables.

In such a bridge, the number of cables kept hanging as they got pulled from both ends. The taunted cables produced the tension force which transmitted through the cables during the constant on boarding and offloading of vehicles on the bridge. If the cables do not provide sufficient tensile strength, it leads to the breakdown of the bridge. 

Tension Force in Cables of Suspension Bridge
Examples of Tension Force
– Suspension Bridge (credit: shutterstock)

Wire Balancing Act

In wire balancing activity, both ends of the wire are attached to the poles.

When a person starts walking on the wire, it stretches the wires downwards due to the weight. The stretched wires produced the tension force on wire that transmitted towards their both end, which helps balance the body on the thin wire.

Tension Force in Wire Balancing Act
Examples of Tension Force
– Wire Balancing Act (credit: shutterstock)

Crane Machine

While lifting any heavy objects, a crane machine uses a giant pulley and a long metallic chain.

Take a note that the crane’s operator and the heavy object are not in contact directly with each other. The stretching of long-chain occurs when it is pulled by both pulley and an object’s weight. Therefore, the required force to lift the object pass through the chain in terms of tension force.

Tension Force in Cables of Crane
Examples of Tension Force
– Crane (credit: shutterstock)

Read more about Inclined Plane that make work easier.

Elevator

The elevator is supported by cables that can endure high tension force. The value of tension developed on the elevator cables depends on whether it moves in the direction of gravity or against gravity.

  • When the elevator is not moving or at rest, the tension is mg. 
  • When the elevator is moving in the direction of gravity, then tension is m(g-a).
  • When the elevator is moving against the direction of gravity, then tension is m(g+a).

That is the reason the maximum tension generated on the elevator cables has limitations about the weight it can carry. Hence, a limited number of people are allowed in the elevator. 

Tension Force in Cables of Elevator
Examples of Tension Force
– Elevator (credit: dewwool)

Vehicle Towing

While towing any vehicle like a car or bike, a taunt chain or rope maximizes the power transfer between two vehicles.

When the chain is attached to the towing vehicle, its engine supplies energy to the arrangement of pulley and chain, which transfers tension force on the taunt chain. Therefore, the energy provided gets coupled to the vehicle, permitting the operator to tow that vehicle.

Tension Force in Chain for Car Towing
Examples of Tension Force
– Vehicle Towing (credit: shutterstock)

Read more about Potential energy to Kinetic energy conversion.

Seat Belt

The seat belt clip of the vehicle that is fixed at both ends generates tension force.

When we apply the brake to the vehicle’s wheels, our body is pulled outwards naturally due to gravity. But the tension force on the seat belt can resist our pulled force on the body, preventing major to minor accidents.

Tension Force in Seat Belt
Examples of Tension Force
– Seat Belt (credit: shutterstock)

Guitar

While playing the guitar, we pull guitar strings with our fingers that creates tension force on them.

Since both ends of strings are tied to the guitar, transmitted tension force along the strings gets reflected at both ends, leading to the generation of sound waves.

Tension Force in String of Guitar
Examples of Tension Force
– Guitar (credit: shutterstock)

Read more about Sliding Friction.

Wire Fencing

Have you noticed that wires are fixed between two poles in the wire fencing network?

Since the wires are fixed tightly, it gets stretched. The stretched wire generates the tension force, which prevents them from breaking.

Tension Force in Wire Fencing
Examples of Tension Force
– Wire Fencing (credit: shutterstock)

Manish Naik

Hello, I'm Manish Naik completed my MSc Physics with Solid-State Electronics as a specialization. I have three years of experience in Article Writing on Physics subject. Writing, which aimed to provide accurate information to all readers, from beginners and experts. In my leisure time, I love to spend my time in nature or visiting historical places. I am honoured to be part of LambdaGeeks. Looking forward to connecting you through LinkedIn - https://www.linkedin.com/in/manish-ashok-naik/ Also, for Maharashtra travel guide and heritage conservation articles, visit my website Wandering Maharashtra - https://wanderingmaharashtra.com/travel-blogs/

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