Does a net force causes a change in an object's motion? Yes, no, or it depends?

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Net force is the sum total of all the forces acting on a body. If the forces that are acting on the body, are equal in magnitude and opposite in direction, the net force will be 0. This is the scenario of balanced forces. In such a case, the net...

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Net force is the sum total of all the forces acting on a body. If the forces that are acting on the body, are equal in magnitude and opposite in direction, the net force will be 0. This is the scenario of balanced forces. In such a case, the net force acting on the body is 0 and hence there is no change in the motion of the body. If it was at rest, it will stay at rest and if it was moving, it will continue to move at the same speed. In comparison, if the forces have different magnitudes and are in the same or different directions, the net force will have a certain value. These unbalanced forces will cause an acceleration and will either speed up or slow down the object (depending on the direction of motion and direction of the net force).

Thus, the change in motion of an object by a net force will depend on the magnitude of the net force. Thus, the answer is "it depends."

 

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