The Newtonian model of gravity in which the force between two objects is given by GMm/r^2.

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For $N$ particles acting under gravity, how long until they settle into a virial equilibrium?

As the title says, if I have a system of particles interacting only due to gravity, over what timescale do we expect them to fall into a virial equilibrium? By virial equilibrium I mean a system that ...
3
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4answers
187 views

How do I correctly introduce time into this equation?

So, for the past few years it's been my goal to create an equation that would give me the position of an object in a gravitational field at time $t$, given it's initial position and velocity. At first ...
2
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2answers
604 views

Infinity problem: Why is gravity $g=0$ zero at the center of Earth if according to Newton gravity formula $g=GM/R^2$? [duplicate]

It is said that value of $g=0$ at the centre of the Earth. $g$ is calculated using the formula $$ g=G*M/R^2.$$ When $R = 0$, $g$ approaches infinity. I have two ...
2
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2answers
258 views

Intuitive understanding of Lagrange point L3

I learned about Lagrange points today and the physics behind L1, L2, L4 and L5 make intuitive sense to me. But I'm stumped by L3. Wikipedia says "L3 in the Sun–Earth system exists on the opposite ...
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0answers
30 views

The stability of falling through a planet [duplicate]

Let's say that you were standing on Earth, and stepped into a hole that went perfectly straight down through the entire planet to the other side. Would the terminal velocity of your fall, and the ...
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2answers
188 views

Units in gravitational $N$ body simulations

I am trying to write a code in Python to simulate $N$ bodies interacting through gravity. In particular I am trying to see whether a system of particles with random initial positions and zero velocity ...
4
votes
2answers
250 views

Is the method of images applicable to gravity?

It is well known that the method of images is a useful tool for solving electrostatics problems. I was wondering why this technique is not applied when considering newtonian gravity? Obviously there ...
3
votes
4answers
273 views

What starts the conversion between GPE and KE?

When researching GPE and KE conversion, lots of websites say that as an object with GPE (Gravitational Potential Energy) falls, that GPE is converted into KE (Kinetic Energy), so there is less GPE and ...
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4answers
844 views

Is it correct to say that falling object are standing still?

As I was browsing youtube I came across the BBC video "Brian Cox visits the world's biggest vacuum chamber - Human Universe: Episode 4 Preview - BBC Two" He drops a bowling ball and a feather in a ...
4
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5answers
519 views

How gently could a comet/asteroid/meteorite “hit” Earth?

Could an object from outer-space with the right velocity and orbit come into contact with the surface of our planet in a manner that wouldn't cause it to burn in our atmosphere?
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2answers
78 views

Why is the gravitational potential energy of ideal uniform massive spring $mgx/2$, not $mgx$?

In this Wikipedia page, $$L= T-V = \frac{1}{2}\frac{m}{3}\dot{x}^2 + \frac{1}{2}M \dot{x}^2 - \frac{1}{2} k x^2 - \frac{m g x}{2} - M g x$$ where $mgx/2$ refers to gravitational potential energy of ...
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2answers
101 views

What is the shape of a gravitation field for a square or cubed mass (say, size of a planet)?

most gravitation models assume a round object as most large masses in space (planets) are more or less round. It is simple to envision that it gravitation pull is also [nicely spherical and diminishes ...
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2answers
117 views

Integrate the law of universal gravitation to get position [closed]

I'm trying to write Physics simulation software which simulates gravitational and electric forces between $n$ bodies. I know how constant acceleration is integrated to get distance, but I have no ...
3
votes
1answer
164 views

What is the force required to move a raindrop?

I'm doing some research on how much force is required to move a typical raindrop (assuming that it is falling straight down) off to the side of X distance. This is for a school project on creating our ...
0
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2answers
137 views

How does gravitational potential energy increase, if field decreases as $h$ increases?

(In the following constants are ommitted) Let $ M = 50, m = 5, h = 5$. Then $$ \text{Potential Energy} = \frac{50\cdot5}{5} = 50.$$ While after increasing the height $h$: $ M = 50 , m =5, h =10 ...
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1answer
172 views

Thought Experiment: An object falling indefinitely under gravity?

So the other day, I devised this thought experiment: Consider an infinite tunnel, and you drop a coin of mass $m$ into it. Considering the effect of gravity to be applicable and neglecting air ...
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2answers
752 views

Gravitational Force units

In the formula $F=mg$, does the mass $m$ needs to be in $kg$? And what is exact value of $g$? I've tried with both and didn't worked.
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1answer
190 views

Why do planets not stop revolving around the Sun? [duplicate]

Why do planets revolving around the Sun not stop revolving? Note I am not asking why planets do not collapse with Sun.
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2answers
233 views

What would be the photon's effective mass in Newton's Law of Gravitation?

If we equalize the force from the Newton's Law of Gravitation to Force on a photon in a gravitional field (I don't know if there is an equation for it). What would be the photon's effective mass? (I ...
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5answers
4k views

If you are on Earth, are your mass and weight the same?

I was wondering how mass and weight are different so I Googled it. I found that mass is constant no matter where you are because it is the amount of matter in an object and weight changes because it's ...
14
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6answers
4k views

Throwing an object around the Earth. Is it possible?

Some of you might be familiar with the cartoon called Astérix. In one of the episodes, Obelix (the really strong fat guy in the stylish striped pants) enters a spear throwing competition. He beats the ...
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2answers
67 views

Traveling to Mars in 24 Days

I am trying to calculate an electromagnetic rail launch from the Moon but I need to know if humans can survive the launch. Please see the specs below. 150 miles of track Proposed final launch speed ...
13
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2answers
823 views

What is a reasonably accurate but simple model of the Milky Way's gravitational field?

I am putting together a toy program which shows how stars move around in the galaxy. To run the simulation I need to know strength of the Milky Way's gravitational field at any location in it. I'm ...
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1answer
309 views

How does the Moon cause the tides?

I am considering the following question, but I can't quite figure it out... I have looked up differential gravity, but I cannot derive the equation for the effect on Earth, and I haven't found any ...
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2answers
159 views

Linear Gravity Inside Solid Sphere Derivation

I am currently taking a dynamics module at university and am revising for a midterm exam. One of the problems on a past paper was to consider a mass falling through a hole in the Earth (pole to ...
0
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1answer
204 views

Clearing up confusion about orbital mechanics

When I see an orbital mechanics problem, I recall the following things from my "toolbox": Angular momentum is conserved for a body orbiting a planet, since the torque due to gravity is 0. Kinetic ...
0
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1answer
191 views

Can we make a “Gravity Mill” based on principle(s) of Newton's cradle?

DISCLAIMER: Newbie/Wannabe Physicist. What's to stop us from making a "Gravity Mill" which is a bar/rod attached with weights on both ends and pivoted at the ...
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1answer
103 views

newton's cradle with 2 balls dropped from same height at same time

I'm creating a logo and want it to be as exact as possible. The logo idea is a "Newtonian cradle", but with only 2 balls and on straight steel wire (can't be bend). What would happen if I dropped ...
6
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5answers
3k views

Evidence that stationary masses in space actually attract each other

I'm finding it rather difficult to find experimental evidence that two stationary masses in space (unaffected by external massive bodies or gravities) actually attract one another. For moving masses, ...
14
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1answer
234 views

Are “echo” explosions near Earth realistic?

Watch the simulation below for better visualization. Suppose we create an explosion, for example at $2R_{Earth}$ from the center of Earth. Just before the explosion was set off, the explosive was at ...
3
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2answers
121 views

Why does General Relativity predict more light deflection than Netwonian Physics?

If one looks at the limit as light's mass approaches zero, Newtonian Physics predicts a deflection of light (this can be seen by the fact that all objects are accelerate the same due to gravity.) ...
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2answers
375 views

What would happen if you dropped iPhone from Outer Space? [closed]

I read this article where the title suggests the iPhone was dropped from space, but it looks more like it was dropped from an airplane I would think that if astronauts dropped an iPhone from space ...
3
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3answers
1k views

How hard would I hit the ground on Mars?

How do you calculate with how much force a mass would hit the ground when falling from a certain height? In particular, I'm curious to know how the force of impact on Earth compares with Mars, so ...
2
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1answer
196 views

What is in the gravitational field that is making the work done independent of path taken?

I could not understand the same path independence in electric field. So I am trying to understand it first in gravitational field and then apply it to electric field.
3
votes
1answer
267 views

Is this xkcd comic feasible? [closed]

I was reading through some xkcd comics, and I came across this one (http://xkcd.com/620/). In the comic, one of the main characters harnesses 91% his weight in order to be able to 'fly' with the lift ...
0
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2answers
507 views

How to determine velocity vector direction with respect to acceleration.

I'm currently writing a program that attempts to simulate particle movement in a gravitational field with more than one object exerting a force on it. I decided that I'd have the particle move by ...
3
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3answers
842 views

Is the shell theorem only an approximation?

I've read the shell theorem during gravitation lectures, i.e. I know it states that the net gravitational field inside a 3D spherical shell or a uniform 2D ring is zero. Now, assume a thin spherical ...
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2answers
359 views

Is gravitation really a conservative force?

A rotating gyroscope that is mounted in a gimbal maintains its rotational axis relative to space when it is moved – and not to the surface of the earth, as illustrated below (the figure shows only the ...
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2answers
201 views

Orbital mechanics problem

Here is a problem from the 2009 $F=ma$ contest on orbital mechanics: Two stars, one of mass $M$, the other of mass $3M$, orbit their common center of mass. When the stars are collinear with the ...
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3answers
110 views

Reason for motion after terminal velocity

Let some object hang by a string. So no motion since weight was counter balanced no net force. Now string is cut. Object is falling under gravity and experiences air resistance. Terminal velocity is ...
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1answer
1k views

Can we manipulate gravitation? [closed]

When I studied general relativity, my teacher said that what we knew today about gravitation was no better than what we had already known since Newton's time, because so far we could only propose ...
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0answers
116 views

Reduced Three-body problem

I know that three-body problem in celestial mechanics can't be solved analytically in general. But suppose that the 3rd body is much smaller than the others, so it does not perturb their orbits. This ...
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2answers
121 views

Newton's Principia: Astronomical prerequisites?

I am planning to read the Principia but I currently have no knowledge about Astronomy. What astronomy prerequisites do I need to understand the Principia? I would prefer older books (or "treatises"), ...
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2answers
91 views

Gravitational potential energy of a system [closed]

I don't know how the gravitational potential energy of a system of particles is defined. For example, how would one calculate the potential energy of a system of two stars, one mass $M$, the other ...
0
votes
1answer
128 views

Do objects launched from Earth retain the Earth's lateral inertia (67,000mph)

We've probably all heard of the gun on a train theory. Fire a bullet that would normally travel 500mph on a train that's moving 200mph (in the same direction the train is moving) and you've now got ...
0
votes
1answer
66 views

Will the bouncing particle exert greater force on the surface?

Imagine elastic collision and no energy is lost from the system. A particle is emitted from the bottom of a box. The box is in inertial motion. The particle hits the top of the box and travels in ...
2
votes
3answers
205 views

Mountain and a feather dropped from same height. Which hits Earth first?

Let's assume: the feather has a mass of $0.006$kg the mountain has a mass of $6 \times 10^{15}$kg the earth has a mass of $6 \times 10^{24}$kg no air resistance both objects released at the same ...
2
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2answers
1k views

Dropping Objects of Different Masses

It's a commonly taught principle that dropping two objects of different mass at the same height, given that there is no air resistance, will result in the two objects making contact with the ground at ...
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1answer
38 views

Work done by a homogeneous gravitational field on a system of particles

Perhaps this is trivial: how does one prove that the work done by a homogeneous gravitational field on a system of particles is equal to the work done on a point mass with the total mass of the ...
2
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2answers
152 views

Why do things here on Earth fall down? [closed]

I want to have an answer with that question above for my physics lesson. I really don't have an idea about it, so, I ask help from you guys and hope that someone can help me with it.