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Draw an inclined plane that shows an effort distance of 4m and a load distance of 1m.

- I am having difficulty interpreting the meaning of the effort distance and load distance. Thanks for your help.

Hello Julieanna,

I am not familiar with the terms you have used in this and the previous question. Those terms are not universally used. But in both cases it does seem  that input or effort distance would be the distance along the incline and that output or load distance would be the vertical height gained by climbing the slope.

The distance along the incline would be the hypotenuse of the right triangle formed by the angled incline, the horizontal under the incline, and a vertical line down from the upper end of the incline.

So in this case, the triangle has a horizontal base, a vertical side, and a hypotenuse. The hypotenuse is 4 m long, the base of the triangle is a horizontal line extended under the incline from the lower end of the incline, and the 3rd side is a vertical line down from the upper end to where it intersects with the horizontal. That 3rd side is 1 m long.

I hope this helps,


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Steve Johnson


I would be delighted to help with questions up through the first year of college Physics. Particularly Electricity, Electronics and Newtonian Mechanics (motion, acceleration etc.). I decline questions on relativity and Atomic Physics. I also could discuss the Space Shuttle and space flight in general.


I have a BS in Physics and an MS in Electrical Engineering. I am retired now. My professional career was in Electrical Engineering with considerable time spent working with accelerometers, gyroscopes and flight dynamics (Physics related topics) while working on the Space Shuttle. I gave formal classroom lessons to technical co-workers periodically over a several year period.

BS Physics, North Dakota State University
MS Electrical Engineering, North Dakota State University

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