# HSC Physics Module 1: Space Summary

Space: 1. The Earth‟s gravitational field
Define weight as the force on an object due to a gravitational field Weight is defined as the force of an object due to a gravitational field. It is a vector quantity with the unit Newton (N). Mathematically, weight can be expressed as W=mg, where m is the mass of the object and g is the acceleration due to gravity. Explain that a change in gravitational potential energy is related to work done Consider the work done to move an object from the Earth‟s surface to a height, h: Work done = force x displacement Work done = forcegravity x displacement Work done = [mass x gravity] x displacement Work done = [mass x gravity] x height

(where forcegravity is the weight) (as the displacement over which the work is done is equal to the height of the lift)

Mathematically, W = mgh

Perform an investigation and gather information to determine a value for acceleration due to gravity using pendulum motion or computer assisted technology and identify reason for possible variations from the value 9.8ms-2

Investigation: Determining a value for gravity Aim: To determine a value for g, by observing the motion of a swinging pendulum Equipment: -50g mass or large nut to act as pendulum -about 1.2m length of string -a support at least one metre above the ground (e.g. hook on ceiling) -stopwatch -another person to assist Method: 1/ Adjust the length of the pendulum, l, to one metre. 2/ Set up equipment as shown:

Robert Lee Chin

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HSC Physics Module 1: Space Summary

l

Time taken for one complete swing is called the period, T

3/

Set pendulum gently by pulling it back 10˚ from vertical. Starting at the extreme of the motion, time 10 full periods, finishing back at the same side. Divide time by 10 and record in table. Calculate a value for g, using g Repeat steps 3-4 four more times, shortening string by 5cm each time. Calculate an average value for g, using all 5 trials

4/ 5/ 6/

4

2

T2

Results: Trial 1 2 3 4 5 Pendulum length (m) 1.01 0.97 0.91 0.85 0.81 Period (s) 2.00 1.93 1.97 1.89 1.88 Average g (ms-2) 9.9680 10.281 9.256 9.394 9.041 9.59 T2 4.00 3.72 3.88 3.57 3.53 n/A

Alternatively, plot T2 against l on an x-y graph and draw the line of best fit:
T squared (s ) 4 3.72 3.88 3.57 3.53 0.00
2

length (m) 1.01 0.97 0.91 0.85 0.81 0.00

Robert Lee Chin

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HSC Physics Module 1: Space Summary Calculate „g‟ using the formula: g

T squared vs L

4.5 4 y = 4.0965x

T squared (s squared)

3.5 3 2.5 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 0 0.2 0.4 0.6 length (m) 0.8 1 1.2

' g' 4 2 4.10 9.62888 ... 9.63 (3 s.f.)

Discussion: Variations in g were due to reaction time in timing the swing- the accuracy of the stopwatch is much more accurate than reaction time. Also, friction between the string and its attachment as well as air resistance, which would have slowed the swing of the pendulum. The reliability of the results could be improved by performing multiple trials for the same length. Also, any results that do not conform with the majority of the results e.g. a value of 7ms-2 for „g‟, should be ignored and the trial repeated until a measurement that conforms to the majority is obtained. The validity of the experiment could be improved by using an attachment for the string that would produce as little friction as possible, without causing the pendulum to swing erratically. The experiment was conducted slightly above sea level (approximately 50 metres). While this altitude may not seem like much, it could have has some effect on the results. Finally, two people were involved with performing the experiment- one to time the pendulum and another to let go of the pendulum. It would be better to have only one person to perform both of these steps because there are differences in reaction times when two or more people are involved.. The first method gave a fairly reliable value for g, (9.59ms-2), only 0.21ms-2 less than the published value of 9.8ms-2. Using the second method gave a slightly more accurate value of 9.63ms-2. The second method is more valid because it relies on the line of best fit, which helps to rule out any discrepant results

Robert Lee Chin

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HSC Physics Module 1: Space Summary Gather secondary information to predict the value of acceleration due to gravity on other planets The value of g on a planet is given by: m g G Planet2 where, ( rPlanet )
G Universal gravitational constant 6.67 10 m Planet mass of planet in kg rPlanet radius of planet in metres
11

m 3 kg 1 s

2

Planet

Value Calculations of g (ms-2) Mercury mPlanet 3.30 10 23 kg rPlanet 3.70 Venus 8.87 Earth Mars 9.80

2.44 106 m (3.30 10 23 ) ( 2.44 10 )
6 2

g

G

mPlanet ( rPlanet )
2

6.67 10

11

3.69709... 3.70ms

2

(3 s.f.)

mPlanet g G

4.87 10 24 kg rPlanet mPlanet
2

6.05 106 m ( 4.87 10 24 ) (6.05 10 )
6 2

( rPlanet )

6.67 10

11

8.87450.. 8.87ms

2

(3 s.f.)

mPlanet
3.70

6.42 10 23 kg rPlanet mPlanet
2

3.40 106 m (6.42 10 23 ) (3.40 10 )
6 2

g

G

( rPlanet )

6.67 10

11

3.70427.. 3.70ms

2

(3 s.f.)

Jupiter 24.8 Saturn 10.4 Uranus 8.83

mPlanet 1.90 10 27 kg rPlanet g G mPlanet ( rPlanet )
2

7.15 10 7 m (1.90 10 27 ) (7.15 10 )
7 2

6.67 10

11

24.7894..

24.8ms

2

(3 s.f.)

mPlanet g G

5.69 10 26 kg rPlanet mPlanet
2

6.03 107 m (5.69 10 26 ) (6.03 10 )
7 2

( rPlanet )

6.67 10

11

10.43766.. 10.4ms

2

(3 s.f.)

mPlanet g G

8.68 10 25 kg rPlanet mPlanet
2

2.56 107 m (8.68 10 25 ) ( 2.56 10 )
7 2

( rPlanet )

6.67 10

11

8.83416.. 8.83ms

2

(3 s.f.)

Pluto 0.623

mPlanet 1.30 10 22 kg rPlanet 1.18 106 m g G mPlanet ( rPlanet )
2

6.67 10

11

(1.30 10 22 ) (1.18 10 )
6 2

0.62273.. 0.632ms

2

(3 s.f.)

Robert Lee Chin

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HSC Physics Module 1: Space Summary Analyse information using the expression F=mg to determine the weight force for a body on Earth and for the same body on other planets The magnitude of the weight force on an object can be calculated using a slightly altered form of Newton‟s second law: F = mg. The direction of the weight force is the same as the direction of the gravitational field at the location of the object i.e. towards the centre of the Earth. The acceleration due to gravity at the Earth‟s surface is 9.8ms-2. The weight of a 465kg llama can be calculated as follows:

m W

465kg g 9.8ms-2 mg 465 9.8 4557

4600N (2 s.f.)

Acceleration due to gravity for the same 465kg llama on different planets: Planet Value of g Weight Force Calculations -2 (ms )

Mercury

3.70 1700

W

mg

465 3.70 1720.5 1700N (2 s.f.)

Venus

8.87 4100

W

mg

465 8.87

4124.55

4100N (2 s.f.)

Earth Mars

9.8 3.70

4600
W mg

465 3.70 1720.5 1700N (2 s.f.)

1700 Jupiter 24.8 12000
W mg 465 24.8 11532 12000N (2 s.f.)

Saturn Uranus Pluto

10.4 8.83 0.623 4800 4100 290

W W W

mg mg mg

465 10.4

4836 4800N (2 s.f.) 4100N (2 s.f.) 290N (2 s.f.)

465 8.83 4105.95 465 10.4 293.88

Robert Lee Chin

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HSC Physics Module 1: Space Summary Define gravitational potential energy as the work done to move an object from a mm G 1 2 very large distance away to a point in a gravitational field, E p r The gravitational potential energy of an object at some point within a gravitational field is defined as: the work done to moving the object from an infinite distance to a point in a gravitational field At an infinite distance away from a gravitational field, the gravitational potential energy is zero. As an object moves towards the source of the field i.e. the centre of a planet, gravitational potential energy becomes negative. Although this value is negative, it represents a change in Ep i.e. work done. Work is therefore required to push an object away from, as well as towards the Earth. Mathematically:
Ep Ep G m1m2 where, r

grav. potential energy
2

G universal grav. constant 6.67 10-11 m 3 kg 1s m1 an object moving within the field m2 mass of planet radius of planet (m2 )

Earth r

r

+

Ep
d

-

Robert Lee Chin

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HSC Physics Module 1: Space Summary

Space: 2. A successful rocket launch
Solve problems and analyse information to calculate the actual velocity of a projectile from its horizontal and vertical components using:

vx v vy

2

ux uy

2

u at
2 2

2a y y

x y

ux t uyt

1 a yt 2 2 A projectile is any object that is launched, and then moves only under the influence of gravity. Examples are a ball that is struck, a bullet shell once it is fired. A rocket or missile is NOT a projectile.
The trajectory of a projectile can be analysed as two separate motions: Horizontal (x-axis) motion, representing constant velocity Vertical (y-axis) motion, representing constant acceleration at “g”, downwards

Δy Uy U θ Angle of launch Ux Δx= range = total horizontal distance

Horizontal velocity, Vx

Vertical velocity, Vy

Ux Equations for Projectile motion: 1) Resolve initial launch velocity into vertical and horizontal component

U
uy u . sin & ux u . cos

Uy

θ
Ux

Robert Lee Chin

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HSC Physics Module 1: Space Summary

2) 3)

Horizontal motion is constant, so all you need is Vertical motion is constant acceleration at “g”

vx

u x and

x

u xt

To find vertical velocity, use

vy

uy
y

ayt
u yt

(a y
1 2 a yt 2

9.8ms-2 )
(a y 9.8ms-2 )

To find vertical displacement, use

Points to remember: -the motion is symmetrical, so the elapsed time is half the full flight -vertical displacement, y has a negative sign -at its peak height, v y
0

-Maximum range is achieved with a launch angle of 45˚, i.e. -horizontal velocity is constant i.e. v x -Use v y -Use
y
uy

45

ux

a y t to find “t” at max height (when vy=0) or find vy at a given time

u yt

1 a y t 2 to find Δy at a given time, or find the time to fall through a given 2 height (if uy=0)

Example Problems: 1) A projectile is fired with a velocity of 50m/s at an angle of 30° to the horizontal. Determine the range of the projectile. u y 50 sin 30 u x 50 cos30 ay 9.8ms 2

Consider the half - flight, v y t1
2

0ms

1

vy ay t

uy

0 50 sin 30 9.8

50 sin 30 9.8

2(50 sin 30 ) 9.8 u xt 50 cos30 2(50 sin 30 ) 9.8 220.924847... 220m (3 s.f.)

x

2) Military bombs must be dropped from an altitude of 15 000m when the plane is flying level at 300ms-1.

Robert Lee Chin

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HSC Physics Module 1: Space Summary a) How far in front must the bombs be released?

y y

15000m u x u yt

300ms

1

uy

0ms

1

1 a yt 2 2 1 15000 0t ( 9.8)t 2 2 15000 t 55.238333... 55.3s (3 s . f .) 4.9 x u xt 300(55.3) 16590m

b) How fast will they be going (in magnitude) when they hit the ground?

t vx vy v

55.3s u x ux uy vx
2

300ms
1

1

uy

0ms

1

ay
1

9.8ms

2

300ms ayt vy
2

0

9.8(55.3) (300) 2

541.94ms

( 541.94) 2

619.43439...ms

1

6.19 10 2 ms 1 (3 s.f.)

Describe the trajectory of an object undergoing projectile motion within the Earth‟s gravitational field in terms of horizontal and vertical components. The trajectory of a projectile (ignoring air resistance) is parabolic, with constant downward acceleration at “g”. The trajectory can be analysed by considering its horizontal and vertical components at particular instances during the flight. The horizontal motion of the projectile is a constant velocity. Its vertical motion is changing all the time due to gravity, which causes the projectile to accelerate at 9.8 m s-2 downwards. Describe Galileo‟s analysis of projectile motion Notice that none of the equations used for projectile motion ever use the mass of the projectile. All objects, regardless of their mass, accelerate with gravity at the same rate. Galileo (1564-1642) performed an experiment to verify this. He dropped objects of the same size and shape, but with different mass, from the leaning tower in Pisa. He found that regardless of mass, all objects hit the ground at the same time. He also rolled cannon balls down an incline (there was friction) and was able to see 2 motions: constant horizontal velocity and constant vertical acceleration.

Robert Lee Chin

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HSC Physics Module 1: Space Summary Perform a first-hand investigation, gather secondary information and analyse data to calculate initial and final velocity, maximum height reached, range, time of flight of a projectile for a range of situations by using simulations, data loggers and computer analysis Experiment: Projectile launcher Aim: To construct a working model of a projectile launcher and to launch it at a target to gather data for calculating various aspects of the projectile‟s flight including force, velocity and range. Equipment: - projectile launcher - steel ball bearings (small enough to fit in projectile launcher barrel) - scientific scales - digital video camera - target (circle of diameter 5 % of range) Note: The experiment requires the assistance of another person during the launching of the projectile. Procedure: 1) Weigh and record the mass of the steel ball with a scientific scale.

2)

Set up equipment as shown below:

Range Target

3)

Place steel ball in barrel of projectile launcher. Pull back end of solid plunger rod at least 20cm until a strong tension force can be felt. Get a friend to help hold down the back end of the launcher base.

Robert Lee Chin

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HSC Physics Module 1: Space Summary Ask an assistant to set up the video camera ready to record the projectile‟s flight when launched. Aim the launcher at the target and adjust the angle of launch according to the range of the target. Release the end of the rod and watch the ball bearing go! Repeat steps 1-6 as many times as possible until accuracy is improved. Once the desired amount of stretch and angle of launch is determined, keep these variables controlled (constant) in each trial to provide reliable results. Measure the displacement of the projectile in the launcher (this will depend on how far back the plunger rod is pulled) and the angle of launch for each trial. Use gathered data to calculate/determine values for: -horizontal and vertical components of the initial velocity -the resultant initial velocity -average acceleration & net force of projectile while in launcher. -range if launched from 50m cliff -velocity one quarter through its flight

4)

5)

6) 7)

8)

9)

Robert Lee Chin

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HSC Physics Module 1: Space Summary Results: Trial No. Gathered Data Time of Range x , flight t, (s) (m) 0.70 0.67 0.78 0.72 4.0 4.0 4.0 4.0 Hit on target/distance off from target (m) Off target- 0.09 Off target - 0.11 Off target - 0.15 n/a

1 2 3 Average

Displacement of projectile in launcher, s = 0.284 m Angle of launch, = 31˚ Mass of projectile, m = 0.015 kg

Discussion: Initial horizontal velocity, ux = 5.6 ms-1 Initial vertical velocity, uy = 3.4 ms-1 Initial resultant velocity, v = 6.6 ms-1, 031˚ above horizontal Average acceleration of projectile while in launcher, aav = 76.7 ms-2 Net Force on projectile while in launcher, Fnet = 1.15 N Range if launched from 50 m cliff = 20.1 m Velocity one quarter through time of flight = 5.8 ms-1, 016˚ above horizontal

Robert Lee Chin

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HSC Physics Module 1: Space Summary Quantity Initial horizontal velocity (ux) Initial Vertical Velocity (uy) Resultant initial velocity (v) Data
x t av 4.0ms 0.72 s
1

Calculations (all answers to 2 s.f.)
ux x t 4.0 0.72 5.6ms
1

ux

5.6ms 31

uy

ux tan

5.6 tan31

3.4ms

1

uy ux

3.4ms 5.6ms 31

1 1

v v

ux

2

uy

2

5.6 2

3.4 2

6.6ms

1

6.6ms 1 ,031 above horizontal

Average acceleration, (aav) Net Force, (Fnet)

v s

6.6ms 1 0.284 m

a av

v2 2s mv 2 2s

6 .6 2 2 0.284

77 ms

2

m v s
y uy ay ux

0.015kg 6.6ms 1 0.284m
50m 3.4ms
1 2

Fnet

0.015 6.6 2 2 0.284

1 .2 N

Range if launched from 50m cliff

9.8ms 5.6ms
1

1 2 a yt 2 1 50 3.4t 9.8t 2 4.9t 2 3.4t 50 0 2 Equation is in the form ax2+bx+c=0. Using the quad. formula, t is given by +ve value of x: y u yt

x t x
Velocity one quarter of time through flight

b

b2 2a

4ac

3.4

3.4 4 4.9 2 4.9

2

50

3.6 2.9

3.6s u x t 5.6 3.6
uy vx tan
2

20.1m
9.8 0.18 1.6ms 5.6 2
2 1

vx t

5.6ms

1

vy v

ayt vy vy vx
2

3.4

t av 4 0.72 0.18s 4 u y 3.4ms 1

1.6

5.82ms v

1

1

tan

1

1.6 5.6

016

5.8ms 1 ,016 above horizontal

Robert Lee Chin

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HSC Physics Module 1: Space Summary Explain the concept of escape velocity in terms of the: -gravitational constant -mass and radius of the planet Escape velocity is defined as: the launch velocity required for a projectile to escape from the Earth‟s gravitational field. Mathematically, Escape velocity, where,
Ve 2GmE rE universal grav.constant 6.67 10-11 m 3 kg 1s
2

G

The escape velocity is therefore proportional to the gravitational constant, G and mass of the planet i.e. the greater the mass of the planet, the higher the escape velocity .It is inversely proportional to the radius of the planet i.e. the larger the planet, the lower the escape velocity. Note: The escape velocity of a planet is the same for all objects, independent of their mass. The escape velocity on earth is approximately 11.2km/s. Outline Newton‟s concept of escape velocity Sir Isaac Newton, the scientist who developed the mathematics behind projectile motion, created the following thought experiment: a person climbed a very high mountain and launched a cannon ball from the peak. The cannon ball follows a parabolic trajectory before hitting Earth. If the cannon ball were to be launched with increasing velocities, it would travel around the Earth because, as it falls, the curvature of the Earth curves away from it. Thus, the projectile would move in a circular orbit at a fixed height above the Earth‟s surface. If the cannon ball were to be launched even faster than this, its orbit would changes from being a circle to an ellipse. Faster still and it would follow a parabolic or hyperbolic path away from the Earth, escaping it entirely.

Earth

Robert Lee Chin

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HSC Physics Module 1: Space Summary Identify why the term „g forces‟ is used to explain the forces acting on an astronaut during launch The term “g-force” refers to a mass‟s apparent rate as a ratio of its true weight.

True weight refers to the weight as mass experiences when stationary (or in relative motion) on the ground e.g. sitting in a vehicle moving horizontally across a flat surface at constant velocity, standing still at ground level. True weight cannot be felt because it is the force due to gravity; gravity being a force-at-a-distance. Apparent weight is the weight a mass experiences due to contact forces or an acceleration (other than gravity). These forces are also known as inertial forces because they arise from the body‟s inertia or resistance to having its momentum changed.
g - force apparent weight true weight

Humans and g-force: -the maximum g-force a properly supported human can withstand is 20g (using fiberglass seating in spacecraft) -most people experience tunnel vision and lose colour perception at 4g G-force experienced by astronaut during a launch into low orbit:

4 3 g-force 2 1

1st stage jettisoned

2nd stage jettisoned
(decreasing mass) 1st stage (decreasing mass)

Ignition of 2nd stage

time

Robert Lee Chin

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HSC Physics Module 1: Space Summary Comparison of forces of a launch to a roller coaster ride: g-force Period during rocket launch Period during roller coaster ride >1g Rockets burning Accelerating upwards 1g At point of lift off on horizontal surfaces and when it reaches peak <1g Just after fuel is spent Accelerating downhill

1g <1g >1g >1g

1g <1g

Identify data sources, gather, analyse and present information on the contribution of one of the following to the development of space exploration: Tsiolkovsky, Oberth, Goddard, Esnault-Pelterie, O„Neill or von Braun Robert Goddard Goddard was a pioneer of modern, liquid-fuel rocketry. As an undergraduate, he wrote a paper proposing the use of gyroscopes for rocket stabilization. Later, he began studying the possible use of liquid fuels in rockets to increase fuel efficiency. He also used calculus to make theoretical calculations of the velocity and position of rockets. Later, he patented the idea of a rocket fueled by gasoline and nitrous oxide- a milestone in rocketry. Goddard designed an experiment that allowed him to confirm that rockets can perform in a complete vacuum i.e. space. During his lifetime, he bought over 200 patents relating to rocket design.

Robert Lee Chin

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HSC Physics Module 1: Space Summary Discuss the effect of the Earth„s orbital motion and its rotational motion on the launch of a rocket The rotation of the Earth on its axis and the orbital motion of the Earth around the sun can be used to provide a launched rocket with a “velocity boost”. This saves fuel whilst giving the rocket the required kinetic energy to achieve the target velocity. To reach Earth orbit, rockets are aimed towards the EAST to take advantage of the Earth‟s rotation (about 1700km/hr or 500m/s). They receive this 1700km/h velocity boost which contributes to their target velocity of about 30 000km/h for a low earth orbit.

Launch trajectory Orbital path Earth rotation from North Pole

Rockets destined to go beyond the Earths orbit are NOT launched until the direction of the Earth‟s orbit around the sun corresponds with the desired direction of the rocket. The rocket is first launched into a low-Earth orbit, as shown above. Rockets are then fired to accelerate it past the Earths‟ orbit. The rocket gains the velocity of the Earth relative to the Sun which is about 107 000 km/h.
Launch trajectory

Sun

Earth

Robert Lee Chin

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HSC Physics Module 1: Space Summary

Analyse the changing acceleration of a rocket during launch in terms of the: -Law of Conservation of Momentum -forces experienced by astronauts Rocket propulsion is a force pair derived from Newton‟s 3rd law i.e.,

Reaction force pushes rocket forwards

- FRocket on gases p gases t (mv)gases

Fgases on rocket p Rocket t (mv)Rocket

Momentum is conserved

Action force pushes on gases, accelerates them backwards

This means the rockets momentum remains constant at all times. During liftoff, the rockets mass decreases as fuel is burnt. Therefore, to maintain Conservation of momentum, the rocket‟s velocity must continue to increase i.e. the rocket‟s acceleration will increase.

Acceleration of rocket vs. Time:

Acceleration

Time

Robert Lee Chin

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HSC Physics Module 1: Space Summary

Two forces act on an astronaut during launch: The downward weight force and the upwards F (T mg ) thrust force. Newton‟s 2nd law states that F ma . Therefore, a . If the m m thrust force, „T’, remains constant, but „m’ keeps decreasing as fuel is burnt, then „a’ must continue to increase. What does this mean for astronauts? It means they will experience increasing g-forces. Also note that as the rocket moves higher, the atmosphere thins, meaning the rocket will accelerate even faster! However, modern rockets have the ability to throttle back the thrust, ensuring a safer flight for the astronauts. Analyse the forces involved in uniform circular motion for a range of objects, including satellites orbiting the Earth Objects in uniform circular motion are always subject to a centripetal (centre-seeking) force. The force is tangent to the circle at a particular instant and is always directed perpendicular to the velocity at that instant.
V

FC

What causes centripetal force? Example Swinging an object on a string Vehicle turning a corner Satellite orbiting Earth A gear turning inside a motor Electron moving perpendicular to a uniform magnetic field Fc caused by… Tension force in string Frictional force between tyres and ground Gravitational force between satellite and Earth Torque of gears turning on eachother Magnetic force between magnetic field and electron

Robert Lee Chin

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HSC Physics Module 1: Space Summary Solve problems and analyse information to calculate centripetal force acting on a satellite undergoing uniform circular motion about the Earth using: F
mv 2 r

For a satellite orbiting the Earth, the centripetal force is supplied by the gravitational force between the satellite and Earth. Hence, use:
FC FC mv 2 where, r centripetal force,in Newtons(N)

m mass of object, in kg v orbital velocity,in kg r radius of orbit/ height above surface,in metres

If the orbital velocity is not known but the masses of the two bodies (e.g. satellite and Earth) are known, the centripetal force can be found because it is supplied by the gravitational force: mm FG G 1 2 2 where, r
r radius of orbit/height above surface m1 mass of orbiting body m2 G mass or central body universal grav. constant

Orbital velocity can be calculated using the same values as above: Gm v where, r

m mass of Earth or other planet r radius of orbit/height above surface G universal grav. constant
The velocity can also be calculated if the radius and period are known: 2 r v where, T T time taken for one orbit, in seconds Example Problems:

Robert Lee Chin

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HSC Physics Module 1: Space Summary 1) The Hubble telescope has a mass of 1 200 kg and orbits at an altitude of 600 km. Calculate the centripetal force acting on this satellite as it performs circular motion around the Earth. The Centripetal force is the gravitational force between the satellite and Earth i.e. FC = FG. m1 1200kg m2 5.97 1024 kg G 6.67 10 11m3kg-1s - 2 r 6.0 105 6.37 106

6.97 106 m

FG

mm G 12 2 r

(6.67 10

11

1200 (5.97 1024 ) ) (6.97 106 )2

9835.9396... 9.84 103 N (3 s.f.)

Hence, the centripetal force acting on the satellite is 9.84 x 103 N. 2) A car with a mass of 800 kg travels at a constant speed of 7.5m/s on a roundabout so that it follows a circular path with a radius of 16m. A person observing makes the statement: „there is not net force acting on the car because the speed is constant and the friction between the tyres and the road balances the centripetal force acting on the car.‟ Assess this statement. Support your answer with an analysis of the horizontal force acting on the car, using the numerical data provided. The car is being acted upon by a net force which is the centripetal (centre-seeking) force. The centripetal force is directed to the centre of the circle, perpendicular to the motion of the car at any instant. The friction is not balancing the centripetal force; the friction IS the centripetal force that is keeping the car in uniform circular motion. If there were no centripetal force, that is, no friction (e.g. on a very smooth surface such as ice), the car would go off at a tangent to the circle.
m 800kg r mv 2 r 16m v 7.5ms -1

Fc

800 (7.5) 2 16

2812.5 N

Hence, the car is being acted on by a centripetal net force of 2812.5N

Robert Lee Chin

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HSC Physics Module 1: Space Summary Compare qualitatively low Earth and geo-stationary orbits Altitude (km) Low-Earth Above the Earth‟s atmosphere but below the van Allen radiation belts 250 1000 1.49 1.75 7750 7350 Spy, surveying and weather satellites, remote sensing, military purposes and for human spaceflight Other sub-types include polar orbits(spying) and equatorial lowearth orbits Geo-stationary Outer van Allen belts (35 800 km)

Orbital period (hours) Orbital velocity (m/s) Uses

23.9 (aka “sidereal day”) 3070 Communications, weather satellites, scientific studies

From Earth, appears to be fixed in the sky. All occupy a single ring positioned above the equator

35 800km

Geostationary orbit is much higher, with a period ≈24 hrs. A communications receiving dish needs only to be aimed directly at it to receive optimal signal strength- no further adjustments are needed.

250-1000 km

Earth, viewed from North pole

Low-Earth orbit has shorter period ≈1.5hours, but faster velocity. Used by the Hubble space telescope.

Robert Lee Chin

22

HSC Physics Module 1: Space Summary Define the term orbital velocity and the quantitative and qualitative relationship between orbital velocity, the gravitational constant, mass of the central body, mass of the satellite and the radius of the orbit using Kepler's Law of Periods Orbital velocity is defined as: the instantaneous speed (magnitude) in the direction indicated by an arrow (directional) drawn as a tangent to a particular point on the orbital path. Johannes Kepler discovered the mathematical relationship between the period of an orbit and its radius: R 3 T 2 i.e.

R3 T2

constant

We know that for an orbiting satellite, FC = FG, so:

r2 GM v2 but orbital velocity, v r 4 2 r 2 GM So, r T2 Hence, R3 T2 GM 4
2

m1v 2 r

GmM 2 r T

where,

R radius of orbit/height above surface T period of orbit G universal grav.constant M mass of centralbody

Kepler‟s law of periods also applies to planets. When comparing any number of planets in the R3 solar system, 2 will always give a constant. T

Robert Lee Chin

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HSC Physics Module 1: Space Summary Solve problems and analyse information using: Example Problems: 1) Two planets, X and Y, travel around a star in the same direction, in circular orbits. Planet X completes one revolution around the star in time T. The radii of the orbits are in the ratio 1:4. How many revolutions does planet Y make about the star in the same time T?

R3 T2

GM 4
2

Using

constant, T2 ( R X ) 3 ( RY ) 3 and RY (T X ) 2 (TY ) 2 ( R X )3 (T X ) 2 1 43
2

R

3

4R X

(4R X )3 (TY ) 2
2 2

TX TY TY

TY

2

64T X

8T X i.e. In thesame time it takes Y to make one revolution, X makes 8 revolutions. 1 Hence, Y must make revolutions 8

2) In June 1969 the Apollo 11 Command Module with Michael Collins on board orbited the moon waiting for the ascent Module to return from the Moon‟s surface. The mass of the Command module was 9.98 x 103 kg, its period was 119 minutes and the radius of its orbit from the moon was 1.85 x 106 metres a) Assuming the command module was in circular orbit, calculate i) The mass of the moon

T R3 T2

119 60 GM 4 4
2 2

7140 s R

1.85 10 6 m

M

R3
2

4

2

(1.85 10 6 ) 3
11

GT

(6.67 10

)(7140 )

2

7.35110 ... 10 22

7.35 10 22 kg (3 s.f.)

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HSC Physics Module 1: Space Summary ii) the magnitude of the orbital velocity of the command module

M V

7.35 10 22 Gm R (6.67 10 11 )(7.35 10 22 ) 1.85 10 6 1627.87373... 1630ms 1 (3 s.f.)

Remember : the mass here refers to the mass of the planet! The mass of the commandmodule is not needed.

3) From nearest to furthest, the four satellite moons of Jupiter first observed by Galileo in the year 1610 are called Io, Europa, Ganymede and Callisto. For the first three moons, the orbital period T of each is exactly twice that of the one orbiting immediately inside it. That is, TEuropa=2xTIo TGanymede=2xTEuropa The mass of Jupiter is 1.90x1027 kg, and the orbital radius of Io is 421 600 km. a) Use Kepler‟s law of periods to calculate Ganymede‟s orbital radius. R Io 421600km 4.216 108 m

(R Io ) 3 (TIo ) 2 (R Io ) 3 (TIo ) 2

(R Gany m ede) 3 (TGany m ede) 2 (4TIo ) 2
2

and TGany m ede 4TIo

(R Gany m ede) 3 Gm 4 2 (4TIo )(Gm) 4 2
11

(R Gany m ede) 3 (4TIo )

(R Gany m ede) 3 R Gany m ede
3

(4TIo )(Gm) 3 (4 4.216 108 )(6.67 10 4 2 4 2 175587433.3... 1.76 108 m (3 s.f.)
b) Calculate Ganymede‟s orbital speed

)(1.90 10 27 )

R V

1.76 108 m m 1.90 10 27 kg Gm R (6.67 10 11 )(1.90 10 27 ) 1.76 108 26833.87445... 2.68 10 4 ms 1 (3 s.f.)

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HSC Physics Module 1: Space Summary Account for the orbital decay of satellites in low Earth orbit A satellite in a stable orbit around the Earth possesses a certain amount of mechanical energy, which is the sum of its kinetic energy (due to its high speed) and its gravitational energy (due to its altitude). The lower the altitude of the orbit, the lower the total mechanical energy is. Orbital decay affects satellites within the Earth‟s atmosphere (up to 1000 km above Earth‟s surface). The force due to friction between the satellite and the air particles of the atmosphere creates heat, resulting in the satellite losing kinetic energy. Gravity causes the satellite to lose altitude and as the satellite falls to lower altitudes, the atmosphere becomes denser and frictional forces increase. This decay is cyclic and speeds up as time passes, causes it to plunge closer to Earth before vaporizing due to enormous heat build up. Note that few satellites actually make it back to Earth intact. Discuss issues associated with safe re-entry for a manned spacecraft into the Earth‟s atmosphere and landing on the Earth‟s surface Issues with re-entry include: -heat build-up -large g-forces produced -ionisation blackout -landing In orbit, a spacecraft has a high kinetic energy (due to high velocity) and GPE due to its height above the Earth‟s surface. During re-entry, the craft must decelerate to lose all this energy. As the atmosphere decelerates the spacecraft, much of this energy is converted to heat. This extreme heat must be tolerated or minimised otherwise the craft risks vaporising. This can be minimised by using a blunt shape for the nose cone. A blunt shape creates a shockwave ahead of itself that absorbs heat generated by friction. Another method is to use protective layers e.g. sacrificial layers, insulating panels or heat-resistant alloys. Finally, the craft can reduce it speed using a series of braking ellipses, in which the craft uses the atmosphere to slow it down before passing into an elliptical orbit to cool down. The deceleration of the craft also results in g-forces, much greater than those experienced during launching due to. Humans are better able to tolerate g-forces lying down, directed “eyes in” rather than “eyes out”. Space shuttles are designed so that astronauts are reclined back and experience g-forces “eyes in”. Use of breaking ellipses also reduces the g-forces Ionisation blackout is a radio blackout that occurs as ions accumulate on the craft as heat builds-up. The Tracking and Data relay Satellite and new space shuttle designs have eliminated this problem. The shuttle design creates a hole in the layer of ions at the tail end of the craft. Radio signals are sent from this opening to the Tracking and Data relay Satellite, then back down to ground station. The spacecraft still have considerable velocity when landing- enough to kill the occupants. Safe landing can be achieved using a separate re-entry capsule with a parachute and landing

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HSC Physics Module 1: Space Summary in the ocean. Another method is for the craft to reach a specific altitude before the occupants complete the descent via parachute. Lastly, the craft can be fitted with landing gear and a drag chute, allowing it to land on the airfield and be reused.

Identify that there is an optimum angle for re-entry into the Earth‟s atmosphere and the consequences of failing to achieve this angle The optimum angle of re-entry depends on the craft, but is usually between 5˚ to 7˚- a 2˚ entry “window”. A spacecraft following the correct angle will decelerate safely along a descent path of about 1000 km. An angle of 7˚ to 9˚ will subject the astronauts to dangerously high gforces. Any steeper than 9˚ will cause the craft to burn up. Re-entering at angles shallower than 5˚ will cause the craft to rebound off the atmosphere back into space.
Angle < 5˚ – too shallow; craft will “bounce off” Angle > 7˚ – too sharp; craft will “burn up”

˚

˚

Angle between 5˚ an 7˚ – optimal range

Space: 3. The Solar System is held together by gravity
Present information and use available evidence to discuss the factors affecting the strength of the gravitational force The strength of the gravitational force is proportional to the product of the masses of the two 1 objects i.e. FG mM and inversely proportional to their distances apart i.e. FG . So the r2 greater the masses of the two objects, the greater the gravitational force and the greater their distance apart, the weaker the gravitational force.

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HSC Physics Module 1: Space Summary Given that M and m are constant, g decreases by a factor of the square of r: r m FG g 2r M 3r 4r m

FG

g 4
m

FG

g 9
m

FG

g 16

The distribution of mass in the two objects also affects the uniformity of the gravitational field. For example, areas of higher or lower density such as mineral, oil and gas deposits will affect g and variations in the thickness of the Earth‟s crust due to tectonic plate boundaries. The shape of the two objects will also affect g. For example, the Earth is not a perfect sphere, but flattened at the poles- g will have greater value here. Variations in altitude affect g i.e. the higher you are, the lower g is. Finally the rotation of the Earth creates a centrifuge effect that effectively lowers the measured value of g.

Describe a gravitational field in the region surrounding a massive object in terms of its effect on other masses in it m g G Planet2 From the mathematical formula: ( rPlanet ) , the gravitational field surrounding a massive object is proportional to its mass but inversely proportional to its radius squared. Every mass acts as if surrounded by a “force field” which attracts any other masses within this field. This field extends on to infinity, meaning that every mass in the universe is exerting a force an every other mass, hence the term Universal gravitation.

Define Newton's Law of Universal Gravitation Sir Isaac Newtons law of Universal gravitational showed that the gravitational force between two masses: - is proportional to the product of their masses - is inversely proportional to the square of the distance from their centres apart Mathematically, this is given by: mM FG G 2 where, r G universal grav.constant 6.67 10 -11 m 3 kg 1 s

2

m and M massesof objects inviolved, in kg r distance from their centresapart,in metres

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HSC Physics Module 1: Space Summary

Solve problems and analyse information using F Example problems:

G

m1 m 2 r2

1) Describe the way in which gravitational force varies with distance for any two objects. For any two objects, (assuming their masses remain constant), the gravitational force between k them is inversely proportional to the square of their distance apart i.e. F , where k is a r2 constant. Say the force is equal to g at a distance of r. Then the force diminishes by half at a distance of 2r. At a distance of 3r, it is one-ninth and at a distance of 4r, it is only onesixteenth. The force diminishes rapidly at first, then more slowly as the distance increases. However, the force never reaches zero unless the distance is infinity.

Force

Distance 3) A geostationary satellite of mass 860kg orbits the Earth with a orbital radius of 35 800km. Calculate the force of gravity keeping it in orbit, assuming mass of Earth is 5.97x1024 kg. m1 860kg r 3.58 108 m m2 5.97 10 24 kg

F

G

m1m2 r
2

(6.67 10

11

)

860 (5.97 10 24 ) (3.58 10 )
8 2

4.00596... 1010

4.01 1010 N (3 s.f.)

Discuss the importance of Newton's Law of Universal Gravitation in understanding and calculating the motion of satellites Once a launched rocket has gained sufficient altitude, it can be accelerated into orbit. It must attain a specific orbital speed to achieve orbit. If the speed is too low, it will spiral back into the atmosphere, eventually burning up or crashing back down to Earth. If the speed is too high, it will leave the Earth‟s orbit altogether. For satellites orbiting the Earth or other planets, a centripetal force maintains uniform circular motion. Without this, it would fly off at a tangent to the circle. The centripetal force keeping satellites in orbit is gravity. By equating the expression for gravitational force with the expression for uniform circular motion, we can find the velocity required to maintain uniform circular motion around the

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HSC Physics Module 1: Space Summary

GmE . Given that mass and radius of the Earth are constants, r and noting that r = rEarth + altitude, the only variable is the altitude of the satellite above the Earth. The greater the radius of orbit, the lower the velocity required to maintain orbit. At a given orbital radius, a satellite orbiting a smaller planet would need to travel at a lower velocity. The bigger the planet, the greater the velocity would need to be.
Earth (orbital velocity), v Furthermore, the above expression for orbital velocity can be used to derive Kepler‟s law of R 3 GmE periods i.e. 2 constant T 4 2

Identify that a slingshot effect can be provided by planets for space probes When scientists wish to send out probes into deep space for exploration, there are considerable implications: -it costs billions of \$ to send a space probe to a single planet… -so it makes more sense to send one probe to several planets… -but the distances are enormous and even at high speeds, it takes years to reach planets… -probes may also need to change direction when travelling between planets… The solution is to fly the space probe close to a planet. This causes the planet to give some of its kinetic energy to the probe which then swings around in a new direction with increased velocity. The planet will actually slow down as it loses a small amount of energy, but because of the huge mass of the planet compared to the probe, the energy loss is insignificant.
Planet orbit

“slingshot” trajectory Planet orbit

Probe

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HSC Physics Module 1: Space Summary

Space: 4. Current and emerging understanding about time and space
Outline the features of the aether model for the transmission of light During the 19th century, physicists knew that all waves required a medium to travel through. Since light was a waveform, it was hypothesised that there was a universal “aether” aka luminiferous aether) which transmitted light through the vacuum of space. Features of the aether: -completely transparent -fill all of space -be stationery in space i.e. act as an absolute frame of reference for all other bodies -possess extremely low density -have no mass -have great elasticity to propagate light waves

Describe and evaluate the Michelson-Morley attempt to measure the relative velocity of the Earth through the aether It was reasoned that if the aether existed, the Earth should move through the aether as it orbited the Sun. This is analogous to putting your hand out of the window of a moving car on a windless day- you will feel an apparent wind. The Michelson-Morley experiment in 1887 tried to detect the aether using the principle that a beam of light travelling into the aether would be slowed down compared to a beam of light travelling across the aether and an effect called interference. The apparatus was set up on a large stone block floating on mercury. A single light source sends a beam of light to a half-silvered mirror and is split in two. One beam (red) heads into the aether while the other (blue) heads across it. Both beams travel the same distance, reflect against a mirror and finish their journey at a telescope. The interference pattern of the two light waves is compared using an interferometer. The entire apparatus is then rotated by 90˚ so that the rays reverse positions. If the interference pattern changed, it would provide evidence for the aether‟s existence.

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HSC Physics Module 1: Space Summary

Mirror Apparatus is rotated by 90˚

Aether wind

Light source
Mirror

Halfsilvered Mirror

Telescope

The experiment concluded with a null result i.e. there was never any change in interference pattern detected. Even though it was repeated extensively with various adjustments and refinements e.g. different times of year, different altitudes, it was always a null result. Gather and process information to interpret the results of the Michelson-Morley experiment Michelson and Morley attempted to prove the existence of the aether using the assumption that the speed light waves would be slowed down when travelling against the “aether wind” compared to light waves travelling perpendicular to it. The shone monochromatic light as a half-silvered mirror inclined at 45 o to the light beam, so that half the light passed through the mirror while the other travelled perpendicular to it. Both light beams travelled the same distance and were reflected back by mirrors placed perpendicular to the beams. The two beams formed an interference pattern of alternating light and dark patterns. When the apparatus was rotated, they expected to see a change in interference pattern as the two beams had switched positions. No such change was ever found even though the equipment was sufficiently sensitive enough. Hence, they concluded that the aether probably did not exist

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HSC Physics Module 1: Space Summary Discuss the role of the Michelson-Morley experiments in making determinations about competing theories A hypothesis gives rise to predictions that can be tested by experiment. From the results of the experiment, judgements can be made as to the validity of the hypothesis. If the results of the experiment do agree with the predictions, then the hypothesis can be accepted as true. If the results do NOT agree with the predictions, they can be rejected as wrong. The Michelson-Morley experiments were performed to test the prediction that an aether wind should exist. The experiment had null results in all instances, despite the equipment being adequately sensitive. However, this did NOT disprove the theory- it merely failed to find any evidence for it. Various modifications were made to the aether model. Each modified theory resulted in new predictions, yet every test failed. 20 years after the Michelson-Morley experiment, Einstein proposed his theory of relativity which did not require an aether model. This theory came with its own predictions which could not be tested at that time. As technology improved, the predictions were tested all found to be true. However, the Michelson-Morley experiment was NOT a failure. It provided supporting evidence for the theory of relativity by allowing a choice to be made between the two conflicting theories. Perform an investigation to distinguish between inertial and non-inertial frames of reference. Investigation: inertial and non-inertial frames of reference Aim: to distinguish between an inertial and a non-inertial frame of reference You will need: -the help of another person who can drive -a plumb bob, or any mass e.g. a nut hanging on a short length of string. Method: 1/ Once in car, ask driver to take short trips across some smooth straight sections of road travelling at constant speed and accelerating. Do the same when travelling along bends. Do NOT look out the window; look only at the plumb bob. Note when the bob hangs directly down and when it does not. The plumb bob effectively acts as an accelerometer.

2/

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HSC Physics Module 1: Space Summary Results: Events when bob hangs straight down Car is at rest Travelling at constant velocity on smooth straight

Events when bob does not hang straight down Car is turning a corner Car is accelerating/decelerating

The plumb bob is on an angle when in a non-inertial frame of reference i.e. accelerating, decelerating or changing direction. The bob hangs straight when in an inertial frame of reference i.e. at rest or when moving along a flat straight at constant speed.

Constant velocity/at rest: inertial frame of reference

Turning a corner, accelerating or decelerating: non-inertial frame of reference

Conclusion: In an inertial frame of reference, there is no way of determining velocity without reference to an outside point. In anon-inertial frame of reference, objects will experience a net force, indicated in this case when the bob hangs on an angle.

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HSC Physics Module 1: Space Summary Outline the nature of an inertial frame of reference An inertial frame of reference is a rigid framework relative to which measurement such as position, velocity and displacement can be measured. It is defined as one that is moving with constant velocity (including direction), or is stationery. One cannot distinguish between two inertial frames of reference. A non-inertial frame of reference involves a change in velocity i.e. an acceleration or deceleration. Discuss the principle of relativity The principle of relativity states that all uniform, steady motion is relative to an observer i.e. undetectable without reference to another frame of reference. For example, if travelling on a plane that is flying horizontally at constant velocity at night, you cannot tell the plane is moving at all! In an inertial frame of reference, all measurements and experiments give the same results. The principle of relativity: -only applies for inertial frames of reference -does not apply for non-inertial frames of reference Analyse and interpret some of Einstein‟s thought experiments involving mirrors and trains and discuss the relationship between thought and reality Einstein’s “Thought experiment”: Imagine you are in a train that is travelling at the speed of light. You are holding a mirror in front of you. Will you be able to see your reflection? There are two possible outcomes: No, you will not see your reflection. This is because you are already travelling at the speed of light. This would support the aether model by implying that light has a fixed velocity relative to it. But… it would violate the principle of relativity because you would be able to tell how fast you were going. Yes, you would see your reflection. This would support the principle of relativity because you would not be able to distinguish your speed. BUT… it would mean that a person observing your reflection from outside the train would see it moving at twice the speed of light! Einstein concluded that… Yes, he would be able to see his reflection because the principle of relativity is NEVER violated. But… the person outside the train would observe your reflection to be travelling normally. This meant that you would both perceive time to be passing differently. The aether model could be regarded as superfluous.

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HSC Physics Module 1: Space Summary The main limitation of these experiments is that they are based on your common sense because most such situations cannot be test in reality. The common goal of a thought experiment is to explore the potential consequences of the principle in question Describe the significance of Einstein‟s assumption of the constancy of light What Einstein assumed from his theory of relativity was all observers see light travelling at the same velocity, (300 000 000 m/s), regardless of their motion. His assumption explained the null result of the Michelson-Morley experiment and proved there was no need for an aether model. The significance of the constancy of light is that there is no such thing as an absolute frame of reference i.e. the principle of relativity is NEVER violated and that space and time are relative values. Identity that if c is constant, then space and time are relative In classical physics, space (distance, position, velocity etc.) were relative values but time was an absolute, passing identically for everyone. The theory of relativity challenged classical physics by assuming that c is a constant. Since distance , then space and time pass differently for different observers, depending on how c time fast they are moving.

Discuss the concept that length standards are defined in terms of time in contrast to the original metre standard The metre was first defined in 1793 by the French government as “one-millionth of the length of the Earth‟s quadrant passing through Paris”. After this arc was (incorrectly) measured, platinum and iron standards were made. When the Systeme Internationale (SI) was established in 1875, it was defined as “the distance scribed between two lines on a single bar of platinum-iridium alloy”. The current definition takes advantage of better technologies and the constancy of light to give a more precise definition. One metre is defined as “the length of the path travelled by 1 th of a second”. light in a vacuum during the time interval of 299 792 458 Other measurements defined in terms of the speed of light include the light-year (approximately 9.47 x 1012 km)

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HSC Physics Module 1: Space Summary Analyse information to discuss the relationship between theory and the evidence supporting it, using Einstein‟s predictions based on relativity that were made many years before evidence was available to support it Einstein‟s theory of relativity predicted alterations to time and space including time dilation, mass dilation and length contraction. When Einstein proposed his theory in 1905, these predictions could not be tested because technology was not yet advanced enough. These predictions can now be tested, because of technological developments. Atomic clocks were developed in the latter half of the 21st century. Extremely accurate atomic clocks have been synchronised, then flown around the world in high-speed aircraft. When brought back down, the clock that was in the aircraft had slowed down slightly. The strongest evidence comes from particle accelerator experiments. Subatomic particles such as electrons and protons are accelerated to speeds very close to the speed of light. Their masses are observed to increase exponentially and infact, newer, heavier particles can be created by colliding subatomic particles together. The half-life decay of radioactive particles travelling at relativistic speeds has been shown to take much longer from the perspective of the scientists. Special relativity has played a key role in the development and design of particle accelerators. One of the earliest particle accelerators, the Cyclotron, reached an energy limit and hade to be modified due to relativistic effects.

Explain qualitatively and quantitatively the consequence of special relativity in relation to: -the relativity of simultaneity -the equivalence between mass and energy -length contraction -time dilation -mass dilation

The relativity of simultaneity refers to the idea that if an observer sees any two events to be simultaneous, then another observer in a different frame of reference will not judge them to be simultaneous i.e. whether you judge two events to be simultaneous depends on the framer of reference.

As an example, say there are two people, A and B. Both are equidistant from two identical light sources and A remains stationary. At the moment when B begins to move right with velocity, v, both lights flash. A, who remains stationery will judge both flashes of light to reach him/her at the same time. B, however, has moved towards the right slightly so that the light from flash 2 reaches them slight before flash 1 (remembering that the speed of light is not infinite). Hence, B will judge the two flashes of light as not simultaneous.

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HSC Physics Module 1: Space Summary A B

Flash 1

v

Flash 2

d

d

The rest mass of an object is equivalent to a certain amount of energy. Mass can be converted into energy and vice versa. For example, nuclear fission reactions that occur in the Sun involve mass being converted into energy and when water is heated, its mass will increase slightly. Einstein‟s famous equation expresses this equivalence of mass and energy: E mc 2 , where E is the amount of energy, m is the rest mass and c is the speed of light. Since c is squared, the amount of energy released from even a small mass is enormous.

For length contraction, time dilation and mass dilation relativistic effects, we use the factor:

1

v2 . Remember that this factor will always be less than one. c2

The length of an object measured within its frame of reference is called its proper length, Lo. Observers in different frames of reference will always judge the observed length, Lv, to be contracted i.e. Lv Lo . For example, a car 3 metres long travelling at 0.5c will appear shorter (2.6m) to a standing observer.
Lv Lo 1 v2 where, c2

Length contraction is given by: Lv
v c

length as judged by an outside observer relative speed within F.of R. speed of light 3.0 108 ms
1

L0 " rest length" within F. of R.

The time taken for an event to occur in its rest frame is called the proper time, to. Observers in different frames of reference will always judge the observed time, tv, to be longer i.e. time passes slower for the person within the travelling frame of reference, t v t o . Using the above Robert Lee Chin 38

HSC Physics Module 1: Space Summary example, say the person in the car speaks on their mobile phone for 1 minute. The standing observer will judge the time taken to be 1min 10 seconds.

tv 1
Time dilation is given by:

to v2 c2

where,

tv v c

time as judged by an outside observer relative speed within F. of R. speed of light 3.0 108 ms
1

t 0 " proper time" within F. of R.

Another consequence of special relativity is that the mass of a moving object increases as its velocity increases- this is called “mass dilation”.

mv 1
Mass dilation is given by:

mo v
2

where,

c2

mv v c

mass as judged by an outside observer relative speed within F. of R. speed of light 3.0 108 ms
1

m0 " proper mass" within F. of R.

This effect is only noticeable at relativistic speeds. As an object is accelerated closer and closer to the speed of light, its mass increases and so does the amount of energy required, making further accelerations more and more difficult. The energy that is used to accelerate the object is instead converted into mass!

E Lv tv

m c2 Lo 1 to 1 v2 c2 mo v2 c2 v2 c2

Solve problems and analyse information using:

mv 1

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HSC Physics Module 1: Space Summary

Example Problems: 1) The nearest star to us is the Large Magellanic Cloud, with its centre located 1.70x105 light years from Earth. Assume you are in a spacecraft travelling at the speed of 0.99999c towards the Large Magellanic Cloud. a) In your frame of reference, what is the distance between Earth and the Large Magellanic cloud?

Lo c

1.70 10 5 LY 0.99999c c2 v2

(1.70 10 5 ) (365 24 60 60) (3.0 108 ) 1.608336 10 21 m

1 Lv

1

0.99999c 2 c2

0.004472124 7.19 1018 m (3 s.f.)

c2 Lo 1 2 v

1.608336 10 21 0.004472124 7.19267... 1018

b) In your frame of reference, how long will it take you to travel from Earth to the Large Magellanic cloud? Lo 1.608336 10 21 to 5.36112 10 21 8 c 3.0 10

tv 1

to c
2

5.36112 10 21 0.004472124

1.198786.. 1015 .

1.20 1015 s (3 s.f.)

v2

2) a) A piece of radioactive material of mass 2.5 kg undergoes radioactive decay. How much energy is released if 10 grams of this mass is converted to energy during the decay process?

m E

0.01kg mc 2 (0.01)(3.0 108 ) 2 9.0 1014 J

b) A mass is moving in an inertial frame of reference at a velocity v relative to a stationery observer. The observer measures an apparent mass increase of 0.37%. Calculate the value of v in ms-1.

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HSC Physics Module 1: Space Summary

mv m0

1.37 1 mo 1 c2 v2 m0 mv m0 mv m0 mv m0 mv m0 mv (3.0 108 ) 2 1 1 1.37 114 489 348ms
1

mv

1 1 v2 c2 v2

c2 v v2 c2 1 c2 1
2

v

c2 1

Discuss the implications of time dilation and length contraction for space travel Current maximum velocities do not allow for viable interstellar travel, as they would take long. If relativistic speeds were attainable, the nearest stars would take only a few years to reach. For example, our nearest star, Alpha Centauri would take 8 years to reach travelling at 0.5c. However, due to the effects of time dilation and length contraction, it would take significantly less time (7 years, infact) for the crew on board such a spacecraft. However, acceleration is always the most costly part of space travel. The effect of mass dilation and time dilation means that the amount of energy required to accelerate beyond 0.9c would be prohibitive. As one gets closer and closer to the speed of light, the energy input required only marginally increases the velocity. If the astronauts were to return to Earth, they would have aged significantly less than those who remained on Earth. While this could make long space journeys possible to achieve within a lifetime, governments may prohibit it because they may not get any “results” during their lifetime. We currently lack the fuel and technology required, hence it is an impractical situation. The speeds reached by astronauts (the fastest to date is a tiny 0.01c) provide negligible relativistic effects. Scientists have proposed using matter-antimatter based engines to reach relativistic speeds but this may takes years to happen.

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