### Video Transcript

Two bodies of masses 15 and 16.5
kilograms were attached to the opposite ends of a light inextensible string, which
passed over a smooth pulley fixed to the edge of a smooth horizontal table. The body of larger mass was placed
on the smooth table, while the smaller one was hanging vertically below the
pulley. Determine the tension in the string
given that the acceleration due to gravity π is equal to 9.8 meters per square
second.

In any question of this type, we
begin by modeling the situation with a diagram. We are told that the masses of the
two bodies are 15 and 16.5 kilograms. Their corresponding downward forces
will therefore be equal to 15π and 16.5π, respectively, where π is gravity equal
to 9.8 meters per square second. Both the pulley and table are
smooth, so we do not need to consider friction in this question. The tension π in the string will
be constant throughout. As the string is inextensible, when
the system is released, both bodies will move with the same acceleration. On release, we assume that the free
hanging body accelerates downwards.

We can now use Newtonβs second law,
force equals mass times acceleration, to set up some equations. If we consider the body on the
table, this will move in a horizontal direction. The only force acting in this
direction is the tension π. Therefore, π is equal to 16.5
multiplied by π. The free hanging body B will
accelerate in a downwards vertical direction. The force 15π is acting in this
direction, whereas the tension is acting in the opposite direction. This means that the sum of the
forces is equal to 15π minus π. This will be equal to 15π. As we are taking π equal to 9.8
and 15 multiplied by 9.8 is 147, this equation simplifies to 147 minus π is equal
to 15π.

We now have two simultaneous
equations that we can solve to calculate the acceleration π and the tension in the
string π. Whilst weβre only interested in
calculating the tension in this question, it is easier to work out the value of π
first. This is because we already have π
as the subject of equation one. Substituting this into equation two
gives us 147 minus 16.5π is equal to 15π. We can add 16.5π to both sides so
that 147 is equal to 31.5π. Finally, dividing by 31.5 gives us
π is equal to fourteen-thirds or 14 over three. We can now substitute this value
back in to equation one. We need to multiply fourteen-thirds
by 16.5. This gives us an answer of 77. We can therefore conclude that the
tension in the string is 77 newtons.