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# What is the mechanical advantage of a single fixed pulley?

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A single fixed pulley has a mechanical advantage of 1:1. Mechanical advantage, which is correlated to the usefulness of a machine, refers to the proportion of force output to force input. Force output refers to the force exerted by the machine, while force input refers to the applied force.

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Machines are devices that utilize mechanical or electrical power to perform a variety of functions. Mechanical machines are contraptions that increase work capacity and efficiency by providing added energy to carry out certain activities.

There are two classifications of mechanical machines: simple and compound. Simple machines are composed of a single mechanical apparatus. The six types of simple machines include the wheel and axle, simple lever, simple inclined plane, pulley, wedge and screw.

A pulley consists of a wheel having a corrugated rim with a length of rope, string, cord or chain running along the rim. This simple machine is typically used to hoist or lower down a load, particularly heavy objects.

The mechanical advantage of a pulley system is determined by the number of ropes hanging on the sides of all pulleys that are working against gravity. A single fixed pulley uses only one rope, where the load is lifted by the same distance as the other end of the rope is pulled down. In a 1:1 mechanical advantage, the applied force is the same regardless of the pulley being used.

## Related Questions

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A movable pulley is a pulley that can freely move. This is only one of three types, the other two being fixed and compound pulleys. Examples of movable pulleys are elevators.

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A compound pulley, sometimes referred to as a block-and-tackle system, is a mechanical arrangement of pulleys that permits a trade-off of applied force for distance, according to HowStuffWorks. By slinging rope over and through a system of wheels, a compound pulley permits weights to be lifted and pulled with the application of relatively little force, saving energy and reducing the power needed to accomplish work.

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The pulley is an effective mechanism that allows the user to lift or drag an object without overexerting. Making a simple pulley system requires just a few basic steps. To construct this system, you will need a basic pulley, screws or nails, a hammer or a drill and the item that will be inserted through the pulley. This item could be rope, wire or string, depending on the weight of the object being moved.