Have you ever observed that whenever you want to move an object, it is either pushed or pulled? In physics, the motion exerted (push or pull) to the object, is termed as force, which arises due to the object’s interaction with another one. It is capable of changing the object’s magnitude of velocity, the direction of motion and even the shape and size of the object. Force takes place in pairs; they can be balanced or unbalanced.
As we look around ourselves, there are many instances where we can find the occurrences of these two forces. This article excerpt makes an attempt to clear the basic differences between balanced and unbalanced forces.
Content: Balanced Forces Vs Unbalanced Forces
|Basis for Comparison
|When the forces exerted on the object, are of equal size but in opposite direction, then the forces are known as balanced forces.
|When the forces applied on the object are unequal in size, then the forces are known as unbalanced forces.
|Same or opposite.
|Stays at rest.
|Moves in the direction of greater force.
|Continues to move in the same speed.
|Changes its speed and direction.
Definition of Balanced Forces
Balanced Forces, as the name suggest are the forces that balance each other, when acted upon an object, causing the object to maintain its equilibrium and does not accelerate. If the forces that are applied to the object are of equal magnitude but are opposite in direction, the forces are said to be balanced.
When the balanced forces are applied to a stationary object, it stays still, but when it is applied on a moving object, it continues moving with a constant speed and same direction. The net force (i.e. the overall or resultant force exerted on the object) will be zero because the forces act in opposite direction, which nullifies one another.
Definition of Unbalanced Forces
The force which is not counterbalanced by a force of equal magnitude and diametrically opposite direction, resulting in disequilibrium of the object and eventually accelerates, it is known as unbalanced forces. The magnitude of the forces applied is not equal, as well as the direction in which the force is applied can either be same or different.
In unbalanced forces, the net force will be non-zero, and the object will move in the direction of the greater force. Thus, it causes acceleration in the object, i.e. stationary objects move, moving objects speed up, slow down, stop or change their direction of motion.
Key Differences Between Balanced and Unbalanced Forces
The points presented to you below are substantial so far as the difference between balanced and unbalanced forces is concerned:
- When the individual forces applied on an object are of same magnitude and opposite direction, then the forces are known as balanced forces. On the other hand, when the forces acting on the object are of different sizes, then the forces are known as unbalanced forces.
- In balanced forces, the magnitude of the two forces is equal, whereas, in the case of unbalanced forces, the magnitude of the two forces are unequal.
- In balanced forces, the two individual forces act in opposite direction. Conversely, in unbalanced forces, the individual forces either act in same or opposite direction.
- Balanced forces cause a still object to remain at rest. As against this, the unbalanced forces cause a stationary object to move in the direction of the greater force.
- If the object is in motion and balanced forces are applied, then the object will continue to move with the same speed. On the contrary, if unbalanced forces are exerted on a moving object then it will slow down, speed up, stop, or its direction will be changed.
- If the forces exerted on the object are balanced, then the net force will be zero, as the two individual forces cancel out each other and will not result in the change in its state of rest/motion.
- Unlike, if the applied force on an object is unbalanced, then the net force will be non-zero, which result in the change in its state.
To sum up, we always require an unbalanced force rather than the balanced one, to change the magnitude or direction of motion of the object, which will continue to exist till the force is applied on the object. Although when this force is removed, then the object will remain in motion, with the velocity gained by it, till then.
If you want to determine, which force is balanced or unbalanced one, first of all, you need to identify what are the forces working on the object and that too in which direction. If the forces counterbalance one another, then the forces are balanced, but when they do not, then it is the case of unbalanced forces.