Ask Science continues his series on simple machines through an examination of wrenches, wheels, and axles.


You are watching: What simple machine is a screwdriver

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Today we’ll proceed with our series on simple machines. We’ve currently discussed pulleys, levers, and also ramps, therefore please inspect out those episodes if girlfriend haven’t yet. And since we’re quiet in this mode, I started wondering: What’s the many common form of straightforward machine?It’s difficult to calculation something choose that because simple machines are virtually everywhere, and sometimes they’re in develops that friend don’t recognize. Take the wheel and also axle because that example. As soon as you think of a wheel and axle, your an initial thought is more than likely the wheel of your car or bike. However, wheels and also axles show up in all sorts of areas that you could not expect. Let’s talk around the wheel and axle in detail and also look in ~ some examples of this simple machine.

Size go Matter

If you grab a screwdriver out of your toolbox, possibilities are the the manage of the screwdriver is fatter 보다 the shaft, or the part that friend put into the screw. Screwdriver designers don’t simply do this because they think it looks nice, the screwdriver is a kind of wheel and axle and the mechanical benefit of a wheel and also axle counts upon the dimension of the wheel compared with the size of the axle.To calculate the mechanical advantage of a wheel and axle, you take the radius of the wheel, (which is the street from the facility of the wheel come the exterior edge), and also divide it by the radius the the axle.So if your screwdriver’s handle has actually a 2 inch radius, and the shaft has a radius the 0.25 inches, the mechanical advantage of her screw driver is: 2 divided by 0.25, which equates to 8. This method for every newton of force you use to the screwdriver, you acquire 8 newtons that force used to the screw.See also: Newton’s 3 legislations of Motion

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Dr. Lee Falin earn a B.S. In computer Science indigenous the university of Illinois, then went top top to attain a Ph.D. In Genetics, Bioinformatics, and Computational Biology from Virginia Tech.