Posted by Kelly on .
A 17.0 kg monkey hangs from a cord suspended from the ceiling of an elevator. The cord can withstand a tension of 220N and breaks as the elevator accelerates. What was the elevator's minimum acceleration (magnintude and direction)?
Please show me how to do this in addition to the answer. I'm having a lot of trouble in my honors Physics class and any additional tips for these types of problems in general would be greatly appreciated.
The weight of the monkey is
W = M g = 17.0 kg * 9.8 m/s^2 = 166.6 N
If it requires a tension of T = 220 N to break the cord, and if that tension were provided, the monkey would be accelerating upward at a rate "a" given by
T  W = M a
T = W + M a = M (a + g)= 220 N
(a + g) = T/M = 12.9 m/s^2
a = 12.9  9.8 m/s^2 = 3.1 m/s^2

Physics 
Julio.,
Monkey= Mass x g= 17 x 9.8 = 166.6
T= 220
TW=MA
220  166.6=MA
A=220  166.6/17
A=3.15