Scientists Say: Torque

There’s a name for a force that twists

This nuts were screwed on to this bolt by applying torque.

Kyle May/Flickr/(CC BY 2.0)

Torque (noun, “TORK”)

In physics, this is a force that causes something to twist or turn around an axis. Pulling a wrench produces torque. This force turns a screw, causing it to tighten.

In a sentence

In a car, an engine produces energy that is translated to torque at the wheels, causing the wheels to turn.

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Power Words

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torque   A force that produces rotation, twisting or turning.

Bethany Brookshire was a longtime staff writer at Science News Explores and is the author of the book Pests: How Humans Create Animal Villains. She has a Ph.D. in physiology and pharmacology and likes to write about neuroscience, biology, climate and more. She thinks Porgs are an invasive species.

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