When you think about it, it seems strange that such a tiny object defies an entire ships direction. Like these party tricks below, so many of these physics tricks seem impossible until you see them.
Something to do with friction maybe?
So how does an anchor work?
The main thing about an anchor’s function is that it works against a force exerted against it by the ship, via the anchor’s chain, in a horizontal direction.
For an anchor to hold, you need to veer out enough chain so that the last part of it lies on the ground. Rule of thumb for small boats is at least depth times five for anchor chain.
So a ship does not lie above its anchor but downstream or downwind of it (assuming only one anchor). To pluck the anchor out of the ground, you take the boat above the anchor, ideally (if it is not snagged) it cannot hold against a vertical force.
So there you are: there is method in science’s madness. The physics behind anchors results in amazing things.
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Sources: The Straight
Siobhan R.// SMC Editor