Forces acting at a point
In this chapter the fundamental quantities, scalars and vectors, which form the very basis of all branches of engineering, are introduced. A force is a vector quantity and in this chapter, the resolution of forces is introduced. Resolving forces is very important in structures, where the principle is used to determine the strength of roof trusses, bridges, cranes, etc. The resolution of forces is also used in studying the motion of vehicles and other particles in dynamics, and in the case of the navigation of ships, aircraft, etc., the vectors take the form of displacements, velocities and accelerations. This chapter gives a sound introduction to the manipulation and use of scalars and vectors, by both graphical and analytical methods.