Conceptual Physics (12th Edition)

Published by Addison-Wesley
ISBN 10: 0321909100
ISBN 13: 978-0-32190-910-7

Chapter 12 - Think and Explain: 62

Answer

No, the rods would not be necessary.

Work Step by Step

Each link in a hanging chain is supported by its neighbors, so the tension is exactly tangent to the chain's shape. When inverted into an arch, this catenary shape ensures that gravitational compression all along the arch will be similarly tangent to the arch, holding it together. There are no force components that would tend to bow the arch outward so the rods are not needed. This is discussed on page 234, and Figure 12.14 illustrates this very well.
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