Management Notes

Reference Notes for Management

A screw jack used for lifting the loads is

A screw jack used for lifting the loads is


A. a reversible machine
B. a non-reversible machine
C. an ideal machine
D. none of these

The Correct Answer Is:

  • B. a non-reversible machine

The correct answer is B) a non-reversible machine.

Why a Screw Jack Used for Lifting Loads is a Non-Reversible Machine:

A screw jack is a mechanical device used for lifting heavy loads or applying a large force through a relatively small distance. The term “non-reversible machine” refers to a type of machine that cannot easily or efficiently convert the work done on it back into the work applied by it. In the context of screw jacks, several factors explain why they are classified as non-reversible machines:

1. Mechanical Efficiency:

Screw jacks are designed with a threaded screw shaft that engages with a nut. When the screw shaft is rotated, the nut moves along the threads, causing the load to be raised or lowered. This process involves the conversion of rotary motion (the turning of the screw) into linear motion (the movement of the nut and load).

However, this conversion is not perfectly efficient due to frictional losses within the threads and between the nut and screw shaft. Some of the applied mechanical energy is dissipated as heat due to this friction, making the process irreversible.

2. Energy Losses:

In a non-reversible machine like a screw jack, the energy applied to lift a load is not fully recoverable. When the screw shaft is turned to raise the load, energy is expended to overcome friction and resistance, leading to losses. These losses manifest as heat generated by the friction between the threads and as work done against the force of gravity.

Unlike a reversible machine, where the majority of energy can be efficiently converted back into work, a screw jack does not have a mechanism for easily recovering this energy.

3. Directionality:

Screw jacks are typically designed to lift loads in one direction, either vertically or horizontally, depending on their application. Reversing the direction of motion in a screw jack often requires additional mechanisms or manual effort, making it less efficient and practical. In contrast, reversible machines are designed to easily change the direction of their operations with minimal energy losses.

Why the Other Options Are Not Correct:

A. A Reversible Machine:

This option is not correct because screw jacks are generally considered non-reversible machines, as explained above. Reversible machines, in contrast, are designed to efficiently convert energy in both directions, allowing for reversible operations with minimal energy losses.

C. An Ideal Machine:

An “ideal machine” is a theoretical concept used in physics and engineering to simplify calculations. In an ideal machine, there are no energy losses due to friction or other factors. Screw jacks, like most real-world machines, do not meet the criteria of an ideal machine because they experience energy losses, particularly due to friction. Therefore, they are not considered ideal machines.

D. None of These:

This option is not correct because, based on the principles of mechanical engineering and machine classification, screw jacks are indeed classified as non-reversible machines due to their inherent energy losses and directionality.

In summary, a screw jack used for lifting loads is categorized as a non-reversible machine because it is unable to efficiently convert the energy applied to it back into useful work and because it experiences energy losses, primarily due to friction.

While screw jacks serve a valuable purpose in various applications, they are not designed for reversible operations or for minimizing energy losses, which are characteristics of reversible machines. Understanding the classification of machines like screw jacks is essential in engineering and mechanical design to optimize their use and efficiency in specific applications.

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