# Questions tagged [newtonian-gravity]

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

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### Rocket launch from a mountain

If we were to build a high speed rail up the side of a mountain like in some Science Fiction movies, what is the velocity needed at the point of leaving the mountain excluding angular momentum from ...
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### How can we get this formula for Gravitational potential?

I just read the wikipedia page http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gravitational_potential But I don't understand how to get this formula: $$\rho(\mathbf{x}) = \frac{1}{4\pi G}\Delta V(\mathbf{x})$$ Can ...
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### Why do two bodies of different masses fall at the same rate (in the absence of air resistance)?

I'm far from being a physics expert and figured this would be a good place to ask a beginner question that has been confusing me for some time. According to Galileo, two bodies of different masses, ...
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### Two planets in same orbit - not planets?

Let us pretend for a moment that there are two identical planets that are exactly opposite their star from each other and are the same distance from said star. (This would make them, at all times, ...
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### Infinite grid of planets with Newtonian gravity

Assuming only Newtonian gravity, suppose that the universe consists of an infinite number of uniform planets, uniformly distributed in a two-dimensional grid infinite in both directions and not moving ...
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### Work done by gravitational field

To calculate the work done by a gravitational field, the equation is written as $$W=GMm(r_\text{initial}^{-2} - r_\text{final}^{-2})$$ Suppose a small mass has distance $R$ from a big mass. So here ...
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### Why do we say that the earth moves around the sun?

In history we are taught that the Catholic Church was wrong, because the Sun does not move around the Earth, instead the Earth moves around the Sun. But then in physics we learn that movement is ...
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### How does gravity affect bullets?

I read recently that if you hold a bullet in one hand and a pistol in the other, both hands at the same height, and subsequently fired the pistol at the same time as dropping the bullet, both bullets ...
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### Why are orbits elliptical? [duplicate]

Almost all of the orbits of planets and other celestial bodies are elliptical, not circular. Is this due to gravitational pull by other nearby massive bodies? If this was the case a two body system ...
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### Calculation of a Gravity Resonance Keyhole

Can anyone describe the mathematics behind the calculation of a resonance keyhole (for a two-body model)? It seems like the size and position of the keyhole should be a function only of mass and ...
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### What is the extent of Earth's gravitational pull? [closed]

Where the gravitational pull of Earth exist up to? What distance from Earth it will be zero? How do the skydivers fly at a same altitude? Won't they feel gravitational pull? What is the Earth's ...
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### Why don't we consider centrifugal force on a mass placed on earth?

Let us say a block of mass is placed on the surface of earth. Then while drawing the forces on that body, we say: Force $F = mg$ acting towards the center of Earth. Normal reaction $N$ offered by the ...
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### Why aren't all rocks in space orbiting bigger rocks?

Why do only big rocks (planets) have satellites, and not small ones? Why doesn't cosmic dust orbit rocks that are many times heavier than the dust grains? If dust is still too heavy then what about ...
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### Why is heavier object more reluctant to get falling down?

Is it because of the upward force that stops the object? for example-
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### Why does the moon drift away from earth?

I once saw on TV that the moon is slowly drifting away from the earth, something like an inch a year. In relation to that the day on earth what also increase in time. I wonder why is that?
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### Jumping into water

Two questions: Assuming you dive head first or fall straight with your legs first, what is the maximal height you can jump into water from and not get hurt? In other words, an H meter fall into water ...
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### Why doesn't the Moon fall onto the Earth?

Why doesn't the Moon fall onto the Earth? For that matter, why doesn't anything rotating a larger body ever fall onto the larger body?
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### Does mass affect speed of orbit at a certain distance?

Does the mass of both the parent object, and the child object affect the speed at which the child object orbits the parent object? I thought it didn't (something like $T^2 \approx R^3$) until I saw ...
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### Can a disk like object (like UFO's) really fly?

UFOs as shown in movies are shown as disk like objects with raised centers that emit some sort of light from bottom. Can such a thing fly? My very limited knowledge in physics tell me that a disk ...
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### The feasibility of a satellite orbiting at a fixed time

I was speaking with some friends of mine, one of whom was an aerospace engineer. He posited the infeasibility of a hypothetical "Margaritaville Satellite" that orbited earth in such a way that ...
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### Why do all the planets of the solar system orbit in roughly the same 2D plane?

Most images you see of the solar system are 2D and all planets orbit in the same plane. In a 3D view, are really all planets orbiting in similar planes? Is there a reason for this? I'd expect that the ...
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### Are Newton's gravity waves detectable by a laser interferometer?

Newton's theory of gravity supports "gravity waves" in that moving objects cause changing gravitational fields. For example, two bodies rotating around their center of mass will have a stronger ...
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### Why is the Earth so fat?

I made a naive calculation of the height of Earth's equatorial bulge and found that it should be about 10km. The true height is about 20km. My question is: why is there this discrepancy? The ...
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### Why does Venus spin in the opposite direction?

Given: Law of Conservation of Angular Momentum. Reverse spinning with dense atmosphere (92 times > Earth & CO2 dominant sulphur based). Surface same degree of aging all over. Hypothetical large ...
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### Hanging chain in a planet's gravitational field

The curve for a chain hanging between two poles in a uniform gravitational field is known as the catenary. Is there known an expression for the curve of a hanging chain on a planet of mass $M$ which ...
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### What properties do you need for building a tower?

When I was a boy I used to daydream about building a tower so tall that the top of it would project into near space. There would perhaps be a zero gravity area in the penthouse where my friends and I ...
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### If it was possible to dig a hole that went from one side of the Earth to the other…

...And you jumped in. What would happen when you got to the middle of the Earth? Would you gradually slow down, until you got to the middle and once you were in middle would every direction feel like ...
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### Is This The Answer To Artificial Gravity?

Einstein teaches that as an object gets faster, its relativistic mass increases... Newton teaches that as an object's mass increases, so does it's gravitational pull... So... if you a tethered some ...
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### Why are Saturn's rings so thin?

Take a look at this picture (from APOD https://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap110308.html): I presume that rocks within rings smash each other. Below the picture there is a note which says that Saturn's rings ...
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### Do we take gravity = 9.8 m/s² for all heights when solving problems? Why or why not?

Do we take gravity = 9.8 m/s² for all heights when solving problems?
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### Why do spacecrafts take off with rockets instead of just ascending like an aircraft until they reach space?

I guess it's not a very educated question, but I never quite understood why spacecrafts have to shoot up and can't just reach space by simply continuing an upwards ascent like an airplane.
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### How does Newtonian mechanics explain why orbiting objects do not fall to the object they are orbiting?

The force of gravity is constantly being applied to an orbiting object. And therefore the object is constantly accelerating. Why doesn't gravity eventually "win" over the object's momentum, like a ...
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### Ski Jumper's vertical velocity after $246.5m$ record?

What would be the vertical velocity of this ski jumper (ski flyer), after he first touches down, after he breaks the record with a $246.5m$ jump? What g force would he experience as he slows down? ...
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### Significance of the second focus in elliptical orbits

1.In classical mechanics, using Newton's laws, the ellipticity of orbits is derived. It is also said that the center of mass is at one of the foci. 2.Each body will orbit the center of the mass of ...
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### Why does the Moon face Earth with the same side?

I know that the rotation period of the moon equals its revolution period. It's just so astonishing that these 2 values have such a small difference. I mean, what is the probability of these 2 values ...
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### Don't heavier objects actually fall faster because they exert their own gravity?

The common understanding is that, setting air resistance aside, all objects dropped to Earth fall at the same rate. This is often demonstrated through the thought experiment of cutting a large object ...
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### Where's the best place to add weight to a Pinewood Derby car?

A little background: a Pinewood Derby car is a small wooden car that races down an inclined track, powered only by gravity. You are allowed to add weight to the car up to a certain limit. Here is a ...
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### Would you be weightless at the center of the Earth?

If you could travel to the center of the Earth (or any planet), would you be weightless there?
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### What is the maximum efficiency of a trebuchet?

Using purely gravitational potential energy, what is the highest efficiency one can achieve with a trebuchet counter-weight type of machine? Efficiency defined here as transformation of potential ...
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### Anti-gravity in an infinite lattice of point masses

Another interesting infinite lattice problem I found while watching a physics documentary. Imagine an infinite square lattice of point masses, subject to gravity. The masses involved are all $m$ and ...
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### What is terminal velocity?

What is terminal velocity? I've heard the term especially when the Discovery Channel is covering something about sky diving. Also, it is commonly known that HALO (Hi-Altitude, Lo-Opening) infantry ...
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### Fluid to particles under newtonian gravity

How to start with a perfect fluid concept and reach (by approximations through certain mathematically well defined assumptions) to the concept of particle ? Here newtonian gravitation is being assumed....
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### What is an analog to QM's Hilbert space in GR?

I've read that QM operates in a Hilbert space (where the state functions live). I don't know if its meaningful to ask such a question, what are the answers to an analogous questions on GR and ...
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### Relation between density and pressure for a perfect fluid

what is the relation between mass density $\rho$ and pressure $P$ for a perfect fluid ?
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### Behaviour of mass and momentum distributions under Newtonian Gravity

In the context of this question should mass distribution $\rho(r,t)$ and momentum distribution $p(r,t)$ be well behaved ? By 'well behaved' it is meant that derivatives of all orders exist everywhere. ...
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