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Satellite Problem

Table 1
Given Information

Table 1 above shows the necessary data given to make statistic calculations. Since a

relationship between distance and acceleration due to gravity is trying to be found, only that data

was listed. Variables measured are Average Distance from Core of Earth in km and

Acceleration due to Gravity in m/s2.

Figure 1. Scatterplot of Data

Figure 1, above, shows a scatterplot of the average distances and accelerations of the

satellites. From looking at the graph alone, the data appears to be linear with a negative slope.
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Table 2
Linear Regression Results

The statistical test decided to be run was linear regression. The table and graph above

shows the linear regression for the data. The linear regression equation is in the form =a+bx.

The regression model for this set of data is =25.4399+-0.002471x. In terms of the problem, the

model says that for every kilometer away a satellite is from Earth, its acceleration due to gravity

decreases by 0.0025 meters per second squared. The correlation coefficient (r) is -0.999593,

which means that the data has a strong negative correlation. The coefficient of determination (r2)

is 0.999187, which means that the data varies little from the regression line.


Ho: =0

Ha: 0


Linear: The data appears to be linear, supported by the statistical values r and r2.

Independent: The group of satellites selected was random, from a population of over 1000 total


Normal: None of the residuals are far from the regression line.
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Equal SD: The residual plot shows a curved pattern, which indicates the test run may not be

applicable, but since the residuals are so small compared to the data, it might be considered

negligible. These observations call for the results of the test to be taken with caution.

Alpha and Beta: a and b in the equation are unbiased estimators of alpha and beta.

Random: The sample was random and unbiased.

Table 3
Linear Regression Test Results

The table above shows the results of a linear regression test for the variables. The statistic

t was used to calculate the p-value of essentially 0. Reject H0 in favor of Ha. There is strong

evidence to suggest correlation between the average distance from the core of earth and

acceleration due to gravity of the satellites. The p-value of 1.195*10-13 is below the alpha level of

0.05. If Ho is assumed true, there is almost no chance of getting results this extreme by chance

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Figure 2. Residual Plots

The figure above show the residuals in the Y-direction of the data points from the

regression line. The residual plot appears quadratic, which indicates the results may not be linear

and should be taken with caution.

Table 4
Confidence Interval

Table 4 above shows a 95% confidence interval for the linear regression test performed

on the data. It can be said with 95% confident that the true slope of the data is between the values

of -0.002529 and -0.002414.

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Table 5
Data (with Galaxy 15 and Moon)

Table 5 above shows the original data points as well as the data for Galaxy 15 and

Earths moon.

Figure 3. Scatterplot of New Data

The figure above shows the scatterplot of the new data with appropriately adjusted axes.

The data does not appear to be linear, so other regressions should be considered.
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Table 7
Power Regression Results of New Data

The table above shows the results of a power regression test on the new data. A power

regression was decided to be run because it best fit the data. The equation produced by this test is

in the form a*xb. For the new set of data, the regression resulted in the equation

=(3.082*108)*x-1.97. In terms of the problem, the model says that the acceleration (m/s2) of the

satellites due to gravity is about 3.082*108 times the inverse square of the distance (km) from the

Earths core. The correlation coefficient (r) is -0.999975, which means that the data has a very

strong negative correlation. The coefficient of determination (r2) is 0.999949, which means there

is little variation from the regression curve.

Figure 4. Residual Plot of New Data

Figure 4 shows the residuals of the data with Galaxy 15 and the Moon. The residuals are

how far away in the Y-direction the observed points are away from the regression model. All of
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the data points in the lower X-direction have similar residuals compared to the others since they

are so close together. More data points would be beneficial, but from the data given the residuals

seem relatively normal.

The second set of data yielded a very different regression than the first. With the addition

of the two new points, it was revealed that the pattern is not linear, but of a power. This could be

explained by the fact that the first set of data was very close together, because most small

sections of power equations tend to appear linear. The power equation is also supported by the

scientific equation for finding acceleration (G*m/r2, where G is the universal gravitational

constant, m is the mass of the body, and r is the distance away from the body), because the

regression model had the exponent of x (distance) as -1.97, which is very close to 1/r2, and the

coefficient 3.082*108 is very close to the product of G and the Earths mass. The power

regression model came close to recreating the Law of Gravitation, which is why it is accepted as

the better regression.

Yes, there is gravity in space. Based on the second model (power regression model), the

acceleration of the ISS due to gravity is 3.082*108*6621-1.97 which is 9.060 m/s2. The astronauts

on the ISS float because the gravity is counteracted by the orbital velocity of the space station.

They are moving so quickly around the Earth that they cant feel the gravity.