Gravity lab

Understanding gravity helps use know how objects fall to the ground and how objects are attracted to one another.

Free fall

Here is a great video on gravity and how it affects everything from free fall to orbiting planets.

There are two important formulas that the video talks about. Here are links to pages that have more information on the acceleration of gravity and the gravitational force between two objects. But why are these important? Let's look at the applications of Newton's second law and the equation for gravitational force.

Orbiting Planets and moons

The moon orbiting Earth

It is important that we understand gravity because it gives us an understanding for why the moon is orbiting Earth and not flying off into deep space. It also helps us understand other forces the moon has on earth like the tides.

flying objects

This is most likely one of the most practical applications of the laws of gravity as it helps us understand everything from...



and most significantly

Getting to the moon.

Yes, Newton's second law is the basis for getting us the the surface of the moon. So how are we going to apply this? Let's start dropping stuff and experimentally find how strong gravity is.

Material for Experiment

1. Ruler or meter stick

2. Steel ball (This can be any kind of ball as long as it solid)

3. Stopwatch

4. Calcualter


1. Measure a certain height (I recommend 1 meter).

2. Drop steel ball from measured height and record the time it took to hit the floor.

3. Repeat at least 5 times for a good data set.

4. Use kinematics from past unit to measure to the acceleration. You can find the equations here if you forgot.

5. Take your data and average out the acceleration.

6. Tada! You've found the acceleration of gravity! It should be somewhere in the ballpark of 9.8 m/s.

Good Job!!!

Preview for next class

Now that we know the acceleration of gravity we are going to look at projectile motion and how we can use the force of gravity to see how far objects travel when thrown or launched.

Created By
Riley Clark


Created with images by Cea. - "Newton & Apple" • tpsdave - "oceana virginia sky" • skeeze - "sky diver parachute jump" • tpsdave - "free fall diving sky" • GuillaumePreat - "space planet earth" • Unsplash - "astronaut american flag salute" • .v1ctor Casale. - "Rule" • LeoNeoBoy - "metal balls bearings" • smaedli - "Stopwatch" • midnightcomm - "Window" • flawedartist - "Skydiving" • Zappy's - "Projectile-Motion-Problem-Solving-Flashcards"

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