How many simple machines do we have?
six simple machines
Scientists define a simple machine as a device that alters either the direction or force of an object. There are six primary types of simple machines: pulley, screw, inclined plane, wheel and axle, wedge, and lever. These simple machines are used in more complex devices every day, making tasks much easier.
- Examples of pulleys include: Elevators use multiple pulleys in order to function. A cargo lift system that allows for items to be hoisted to higher floors is a pulley system. Wells use the pulley system to hoist the bucket out of the well. Many types of exercise equipment use pulleys in order to function.
- Simple machines help us make work easier by applying a force over a greater distance. This fundamental idea enables the inclined plane to lift heavy objects with little effort, the wedge to easily cut rigid objects in two, and the screw to multiply a rotational torque into a linear force.
- Usually the term refers to the six classical simple machines which were defined by Renaissance scientists:
- Wheel and axle.
- Inclined plane.
Updated: 2nd October 2019