Simple Machines - Physics
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Simple Machines

An example of a screw, a wedge,
a wheel and axle, and a lever

Machines are ways to make it easier to do work. Many plants and animals have evolved natural machines like arm muscles (a kind of lever) or teeth (a kind of wedge) or a bacteria's flagellum (a kind of screw). Many animals also make machines out of dirt, wood, and stone. People make machines too. There are six different kinds of simple machines. Many of the more complicated machines we use are made of combinations of these six simple ideas.

Learn by Doing - a computer game where you build simple machines

Bibliography and further reading about simple machines:

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Copyright 2012-2015 Karen Carr, Portland State University. This page last updated September 2015.

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