# A-level Mathematics/Edexcel/Mechanics 1/Mathematical Models in Mechanics

Mathematical modelling is the process of translating a real world problem into the language of mathematics, allowing the problem to be solved and a solution produced. The more accurate the model can result in a more accurate solution.

## Terminology

This terminology is used in modelling:

### Particle

A body whose dimensions are so small compared with other lengths involved, it can be represented as a single point.

A particle with a hole through the centre, allowing it to be threaded onto a string.

### Lamina

A flat object whose thickness is small, compared with its length and breadth. In a uniform lamina equal areas have equal masses.

### Rigid body

An object made of particles which stay in the same position, relative to each other, regardless of the forces acting on it.

### Rod

An object that only has length, and all its mass acts along a line. In a uniform rod equal lengths have equal masses. In a non-uniform rod, equal lengths do not have equal masses.

### Light object

An object that is assumed to have no mass.

### Inextensible String

A string that has a constant length regardless of the forces acting on it.

### Smooth surface

A surface that has no frictional forces.

### Peg

A support from which a body may hang or rest.