Q:

What are the main branches of mechanics?

A:

The two main branches of mechanics are statics and dynamics. Static mechanics is the study of forces which are required to keep a body in equilibrium. Dynamics is the study of motion itself, and the forces producing it.

A practical example of the use of static mechanics is in architecture. It is necessary to determine all of the stresses that load-bearing supports will be subjected to in a structure. Dynamics is further divided into kinetics and kinematics. Kinetics looks at the forces which are connected to motion. Kinematics ignores the forces themselves, in favor of looking at motion only. A practical application of dynamic mechanics is mechanical engineering. The branches of mechanics are divided even further into fields, depending on what materials they are dealing with. For instance, celestial mechanics has to do the astronomical bodies.


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