Friction Calculator

Created by Luciano Mino
Last updated: Jul 24, 2022

Our friction calculator allows you to effortlessly obtain the friction coefficient and its associated force acting on an object.

In this calculator, we will describe:

  • What friction is;
  • Static and kinetic friction formulas and definition;
  • Force of friction equation; and
  • How to find the coefficient of friction

Stay put while we explain all you need to know about this classical mechanics topic ⚙.

What is friction? Static and kinetic friction

Let's take a look at some definitions before you start using our friction calculator.

Friction is a force that opposes the relative motion between two objects or surfaces.

When we refer to the interaction between two solid objects, we can differentiate two types of friction: static and kinetic friction.

Static friction

Static friction is the force that prevents an object from moving when we apply a force to it. For example, if we apply a small amount of force to a heavy piece of furniture 📦, it will remain in its place.

After a certain amount of force is applied, the static friction breaks, and the object begins to move under kinetic friction.

Kinetic friction

Kinetic friction, on the other hand, acts on moving surfaces (relative to each other) and opposes the direction of movement. Without kinetic friction, nothing would prevent an object from sliding forever ⛸.

🙋 If you already know everything there is to know about friction, skip ahead and start using our friction calculator right away!

Static and kinetic friction formulas

The force of friction equation is similar, and it depends on the normal force in both cases:

fs=μsNf_{s} = \mu_{s} N

this is the static friction force equation, where:

  • μs\mu_{s} is the coefficient of static friction (measured at the maximum applied force before the object starts moving); and
  • NN the normal force acting on the body.

Similarly, the kinetic friction force formula is:

fk=μkNf_{k} = \mu_{k} N

where, again, NN is the normal force, and μk\mu_{k} is the kinetic friction coefficient.

✅ You can find either the friction force, normal force, or friction coefficient with our friction calculator! Simply input any two parameters, and our tool will do the rest.

How to find the coefficient of friction

You can also find both coefficients of friction manually. To do this, you simply need to divide the friction force ff by the normal force.

μ=fN\mu = \frac{f}{N}

❓ Of course, finding this friction force might be difficult, and it entirely depends on the problem you're trying to solve.

Luciano Mino
F = μN
Friction coefficient (μ)
Normal force (N)
lbf
Friction (F)
lbf
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