SAT Subject Physics Practice Question 575: Answer and Explanation

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Question: 575

1. A clothesline is strung between two posts, and wet clothing weighing 200 N is hung on the line, which sags under the weight of the clothes. If one end of the line is pulled to straighten the line, which of the following would be true?

I. The tension in the rope undergoes a large increase.

II. The tension in the rope undergoes a large decrease.

III. The weight in the rope undergoes a large increase.

A. I only
B. II only
C. I and III only
D. II and III only
E. I, II, and III

Correct Answer: A

Explanation:

The correct answer is (A). The tension in the rope increases as the angle decreases because the sum of the four forces leads to ΣF = 2T = Wt/sinθ. Note that as the angle becomes smaller, its sine also becomes smaller. This causes the tension in the line to increase drastically.

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