A centrifuge is a piece of equipment that puts an object in rotation around a fixed axis, applying a force perpendicular to the axis of spin that can be strong. The centrifuge works using the sedimentation principle, where the centrifugal acceleration causes denser substances and particles to move outward in the radial direction. At the same time, objects that are less dense move to the center. In a laboratory centrifuge that uses sample tubes, the radial acceleration causes denser particles to settle to the bottom of the tube, while low-density substances rise to the top. There are three types of centrifuge designed for different applications. Industrial scale centrifuges are used in manufacturing and waste processing to sediment suspended solids, or to separate immiscible liquids. An example is the cream separator found in dairies. High speed centrifuges and ultracentrifuges able to provide high accelerations can separate fine particles down to the nano-scale, molecules of different masses.
Large centrifuges are used to simulate high acceleration environments. Medium-sized centrifuges are used in washing machines and at some swimming pools to wring water out of fabrics. Gas centrifuges are used for isotope separation, such as to enrich nuclear fuel for fissile isotopes. English military engineer Benjamin Robins invented a whirling arm apparatus to determine drag. In 1864, Antonin Prandtl proposed the idea of a dairy centrifuge to separate cream from milk; the idea was subsequently put into practice by his brother, Alexander Prandtl, who made improvements to his brother's design, exhibited a working butterfat extraction machine in 1875. A centrifuge machine can be described as a machine with a rotating container that applies centrifugal force to its contents. There are multiple types of centrifuge, which can be classified by intended use or by rotor design: Types by rotor design: Fixed-angle centrifuges are designed to hold the sample containers at a constant angle relative to the central axis.
Swinging head centrifuges, in contrast to fixed-angle centrifuges, have a hinge where the sample containers are attached to the central rotor. This allows all of the samples to swing outwards. Continuous tubular centrifuges do not have individual sample vessels and are used for high volume applications. Types by intended use: Laboratory centrifuges, are general-purpose instruments of several types with distinct, but overlapping, capabilities; these include superspeed centrifuges and preparative ultracentrifuges. Analytical ultracentrifuges are designed to perform sedimentation analysis of macromolecules using the principles devised by Theodor Svedberg. Haematocrit centrifuges are used to measure the volume percentage of red blood cells in whole blood. Gas centrifuges, including Zippe-type centrifuges, for isotopic separations in the gas phase. Industrial centrifuges may otherwise be classified according to the type of separation of the high density fraction from the low density one. There are two types of centrifuges: the filtration and sedimentation centrifuges.
For the filtration or the so-called screen centrifuge the drum is perforated and is inserted with a filter, for example a filter cloth, wire mesh or lot screen. The suspension flows through the filter and the drum with the perforated wall from the inside to the outside. In this way the solid material can be removed; the kind of removing depends on the type of centrifuge, for example manually or periodically. Common types are: Screen/scroll centrifuges Pusher centrifuges Peeler centrifuges Inverting filter centrifuges Sliding discharge centrifuges Pendulum centrifugesIn the sedimentation centrifuges the drum is a solid wall; this type of centrifuge is used for the purification of a suspension. For the acceleration of the natural deposition process of suspension the centrifuges use centrifugal force. With so-called overflow centrifuges the suspension is drained off and the liquid is added constantly. Common types are: Pendulum centrifuges. Though most modern centrifuges are electrically powered, a hand-powered variant inspired by the whirligig has been developed for medical applications in developing countries.
A wide variety of laboratory-scale centrifuges are used in chemistry, biology and clinical medicine for isolating and separating suspensions and immiscible liquids. They vary in speed, temperature control, other characteristics. Laboratory centrifuges can accept a range of different fixed-angle and swinging bucket rotors able to carry different numbers of centrifuge tubes and rated for specific maximum speeds. Controls vary from simple electrical timers to programmable models able to control acceleration and deceleration rates, running speeds, temperature regimes. Ultracentrifuges spin the rotors under vacuum, eliminating air resistance and enabling exact temperature control. Zonal rotors and continuous flow systems are capable of handing bulk and larger sample volumes in a laboratory-scale instrument. Another application in laboratories is blood separation. Blood separates into cells and proteins
Solubility is the property of a solid, liquid or gaseous chemical substance called solute to dissolve in a solid, liquid or gaseous solvent. The solubility of a substance fundamentally depends on the physical and chemical properties of the solute and solvent as well as on temperature and presence of other chemicals of the solution; the extent of the solubility of a substance in a specific solvent is measured as the saturation concentration, where adding more solute does not increase the concentration of the solution and begins to precipitate the excess amount of solute. Insolubility is the inability to dissolve in a liquid or gaseous solvent. Most the solvent is a liquid, which can be a pure substance or a mixture. One may speak of solid solution, but of solution in a gas. Under certain conditions, the equilibrium solubility can be exceeded to give a so-called supersaturated solution, metastable. Metastability of crystals can lead to apparent differences in the amount of a chemical that dissolves depending on its crystalline form or particle size.
A supersaturated solution crystallises when'seed' crystals are introduced and rapid equilibration occurs. Phenylsalicylate is one such simple observable substance when melted and cooled below its fusion point. Solubility is not to be confused with the ability to'dissolve' a substance, because the solution might occur because of a chemical reaction. For example, zinc'dissolves' in hydrochloric acid as a result of a chemical reaction releasing hydrogen gas in a displacement reaction; the zinc ions are soluble in the acid. The solubility of a substance is an different property from the rate of solution, how fast it dissolves; the smaller a particle is, the faster it dissolves although there are many factors to add to this generalization. Crucially solubility applies to all areas of chemistry, inorganic, physical and biochemistry. In all cases it will depend on the physical conditions and the enthalpy and entropy directly relating to the solvents and solutes concerned. By far the most common solvent in chemistry is water, a solvent for most ionic compounds as well as a wide range of organic substances.
This is a crucial factor in much environmental and geochemical work. According to the IUPAC definition, solubility is the analytical composition of a saturated solution expressed as a proportion of a designated solute in a designated solvent. Solubility may be stated in various units of concentration such as molarity, mole fraction, mole ratio, mass per volume and other units; the extent of solubility ranges from infinitely soluble such as ethanol in water, to poorly soluble, such as silver chloride in water. The term insoluble is applied to poorly or poorly soluble compounds. A number of other descriptive terms are used to qualify the extent of solubility for a given application. For example, U. S. Pharmacopoeia gives the following terms: The thresholds to describe something as insoluble, or similar terms, may depend on the application. For example, one source states that substances are described as "insoluble" when their solubility is less than 0.1 g per 100 mL of solvent. Solubility occurs under dynamic equilibrium, which means that solubility results from the simultaneous and opposing processes of dissolution and phase joining.
The solubility equilibrium occurs. The term solubility is used in some fields where the solute is altered by solvolysis. For example, many metals and their oxides are said to be "soluble in hydrochloric acid", although in fact the aqueous acid irreversibly degrades the solid to give soluble products, it is true that most ionic solids are dissolved by polar solvents, but such processes are reversible. In those cases where the solute is not recovered upon evaporation of the solvent, the process is referred to as solvolysis; the thermodynamic concept of solubility does not apply straightforwardly to solvolysis. When a solute dissolves, it may form several species in the solution. For example, an aqueous suspension of ferrous hydroxide, Fe2, will contain the series + as well as other species. Furthermore, the solubility of ferrous hydroxide and the composition of its soluble components depend on pH. In general, solubility in the solvent phase can be given only for a specific solute, thermodynamically stable, the value of the solubility will include all the species in the solution.
Solubility is defined for specific phases. For example, the solubility of aragonite and calcite in water are expected to differ though they are both polymorphs of calcium carbonate and have the same chemical formula; the solubility of one substance in another is determined by the balance of intermolecular forces between the solvent and solute, the entropy change that accompanies the solvation. Factors such as temperature and pressure will alter this balance. Solubility may strongly depend on the presence of other species dissolved in the solvent, for example, complex-forming anions in liquids. Solubility will depend on the excess or deficiency of a common ion in the solution, a phenomenon known as the common-ion effect. To a lesser extent, solubility will depend on the ionic strength of solutions; the last two effects can be quantified using the equation for solubility equilibrium. For a solid that dissolves in a redox reaction, solubility is expe
Nanotechnology is manipulation of matter on an atomic and supramolecular scale. The earliest, widespread description of nanotechnology referred to the particular technological goal of manipulating atoms and molecules for fabrication of macroscale products now referred to as molecular nanotechnology. A more generalized description of nanotechnology was subsequently established by the National Nanotechnology Initiative, which defines nanotechnology as the manipulation of matter with at least one dimension sized from 1 to 100 nanometers; this definition reflects the fact that quantum mechanical effects are important at this quantum-realm scale, so the definition shifted from a particular technological goal to a research category inclusive of all types of research and technologies that deal with the special properties of matter which occur below the given size threshold. It is therefore common to see the plural form "nanotechnologies" as well as "nanoscale technologies" to refer to the broad range of research and applications whose common trait is size.
Because of the variety of potential applications, governments have invested billions of dollars in nanotechnology research. Through 2012, the USA has invested $3.7 billion using its National Nanotechnology Initiative, the European Union has invested $1.2 billion, Japan has invested $750 million. Nanotechnology as defined by size is very broad, including fields of science as diverse as surface science, organic chemistry, molecular biology, semiconductor physics, energy storage, molecular engineering, etc; the associated research and applications are diverse, ranging from extensions of conventional device physics to new approaches based upon molecular self-assembly, from developing new materials with dimensions on the nanoscale to direct control of matter on the atomic scale. Scientists debate the future implications of nanotechnology. Nanotechnology may be able to create many new materials and devices with a vast range of applications, such as in nanomedicine, biomaterials energy production, consumer products.
On the other hand, nanotechnology raises many of the same issues as any new technology, including concerns about the toxicity and environmental impact of nanomaterials, their potential effects on global economics, as well as speculation about various doomsday scenarios. These concerns have led to a debate among advocacy groups and governments on whether special regulation of nanotechnology is warranted; the concepts that seeded nanotechnology were first discussed in 1959 by renowned physicist Richard Feynman in his talk There's Plenty of Room at the Bottom, in which he described the possibility of synthesis via direct manipulation of atoms. The term "nano-technology" was first used by Norio Taniguchi in 1974, though it was not known. Inspired by Feynman's concepts, K. Eric Drexler used the term "nanotechnology" in his 1986 book Engines of Creation: The Coming Era of Nanotechnology, which proposed the idea of a nanoscale "assembler" which would be able to build a copy of itself and of other items of arbitrary complexity with atomic control.
In 1986, Drexler co-founded The Foresight Institute to help increase public awareness and understanding of nanotechnology concepts and implications. Thus, emergence of nanotechnology as a field in the 1980s occurred through convergence of Drexler's theoretical and public work, which developed and popularized a conceptual framework for nanotechnology, high-visibility experimental advances that drew additional wide-scale attention to the prospects of atomic control of matter. Since the popularity spike in the 1980s, most of nanotechnology has involved investigation of several approaches to making mechanical devices out of a small number of atoms. In the 1980s, two major breakthroughs sparked the growth of nanotechnology in modern era. First, the invention of the scanning tunneling microscope in 1981 which provided unprecedented visualization of individual atoms and bonds, was used to manipulate individual atoms in 1989; the microscope's developers Gerd Binnig and Heinrich Rohrer at IBM Zurich Research Laboratory received a Nobel Prize in Physics in 1986.
Binnig and Gerber invented the analogous atomic force microscope that year. Second, Fullerenes were discovered in 1985 by Harry Kroto, Richard Smalley, Robert Curl, who together won the 1996 Nobel Prize in Chemistry. C60 was not described as nanotechnology. In the early 2000s, the field garnered increased scientific and commercial attention that led to both controversy and progress. Controversies emerged regarding the definitions and potential implications of nanotechnologies, exemplified by the Royal Society's report on nanotechnology. Challenges were raised regarding the feasibility of applications envisioned by advocates of molecular nanotechnology, which culminated in a public debate between Drexler and Smalley in 2001 and 2003. Meanwhile, commercialization of products based on advancements in nanoscale technologies began emerging; these products are limited to bulk applications of nanomaterials and do not involve atomic control of matter. Some examples include the Silver Nano platform for using silver nanoparticles as an antibacterial agent, nanoparticle-based transparent sunscreens, carbon fiber strengthening using silica nanoparticles, carbon nanotubes for stain-resistant textiles.
Governments moved to promote and fund research into nanotechnology, such as in the U. S
Sedimentation is the tendency for particles in suspension to settle out of the fluid in which they are entrained and come to rest against a barrier. This is due to their motion through the fluid in response to the forces acting on them: these forces can be due to gravity, centrifugal acceleration, or electromagnetism. In geology, sedimentation is used as the opposite of erosion, i.e. the terminal end of sediment transport. In that sense, it includes the termination of transport by true bedload transport. Settling is the falling of suspended particles through the liquid, whereas sedimentation is the termination of the settling process. In estuarine environments, settling can be influenced by the absence of vegetation. Trees such as mangroves are crucial to the attenuation of waves or currents, promoting the settlement of suspended particles. Sedimentation may pertain to objects of various sizes, ranging from large rocks in flowing water to suspensions of dust and pollen particles to cellular suspensions to solutions of single molecules such as proteins and peptides.
Small molecules supply a sufficiently strong force to produce significant sedimentation. The term is used in geology to describe the deposition of sediment which results in the formation of sedimentary rock, but it is used in various chemical and environmental fields to describe the motion of often-smaller particles and molecules; this process is used in the biotech industry to separate cells from the culture media. In a sedimentation experiment, the applied force accelerates the particles to a terminal velocity v t e r m at which the applied force is canceled by an opposing drag force. For small enough particles, the drag force varies linearly with the terminal velocity, i.e. F d r a g = f v t e r m where f depends only on the properties of the particle and the surrounding fluid; the applied force varies linearly with some coupling constant that depends only on the properties of the particle, F a p p = q E a p p. Hence, it is possible to define a sedimentation coefficient s = d e f q / f that depends only on the properties of the particle and the surrounding fluid.
Thus, measuring s can reveal underlying properties of the particle. In many cases, the motion of the particles is blocked by a hard boundary; the concentration of particles at the boundary is opposed by the diffusion of the particles. The sedimentation of a single particle under gravity is described by the Mason–Weaver equation, which has a simple exact solution; the sedimentation coefficient s The sedimentation of a single particle under centrifugal force is described by the Lamm equation, which has an exact solution. The sedimentation coefficient s equals m b / f, where m b is the buoyant mass. However, the Lamm equation differs from the Mason–Weaver equation because the centrifugal force depends on radius from the origin of rotation, whereas in the Mason–Weaver equation gravity is constant; the Lamm equation has extra terms, since it pertains to sector-shaped cells, whereas the Mason–Weaver equation is one-dimensional. Classification of sedimentation: Type 1 sedimentation is characterized by particles that settle discretely at a constant settling velocity,or by the deposition of Iron-Rich minerals to streamlines down to the point source.
They do not flocculate or stick to other during settling. Example: sand and grit material Type 2 sedimentation is characterized by particles that flocculate during sedimentation and because of this their size is changing and therefore their settling velocity is changing. Example: alum or iron coagulation Type 3 sedimentation is known as zone sedimentation. In this process the particles are at a high concentration such that the particles tend to settle as a mass and a distinct clear zone and sludge zone are present. Zone settling occurs in lime-softening, active sludge sedimentation and sludge thickeners. In geology, sedimentation is the deposition of particles carried by a fluid flow. For suspended load, this can be expressed mathematically by the Exner equation, results in the formation of depositional landforms and the rocks that constitute sedimentary record. An undesired increased transport and sedimentation of suspended material is called siltation, it is a major source of pollution in waterways in some parts of the world.
High sedimentation rates can be a result of poor land management and a high frequency of flooding events. If not managed properly, it can be detrimental to fragile ecosystems on the receiving end, such as coral reefs. Climate change affects siltation rates. In chemistry, sedimentation has
A desiccant is a hygroscopic substance that induces or sustains a state of dryness in its vicinity. Encountered pre-packaged desiccants are solids that absorb water. Desiccants for specialized purposes may be in forms other than solid, may work through other principles, such as chemical bonding of water molecules, they are encountered in foods to retain crispness. Industrially, desiccants are used to control the level of water in gas streams. Although some desiccants are chemically inert, others are reactive and require specialized handling techniques; the most common desiccant is silica, an otherwise inert, water-insoluble white solid. Tens of thousands of tons are produced annually for this purpose. Other common desiccants include activated charcoal, calcium sulfate, calcium chloride, molecular sieves. One measure of desiccant efficiency is the ratio of water storable in the desiccant relative to the mass of desiccant. Another measure is the residual relative humidity of the air or other fluid being dried.
The performance of any desiccant varies with temperature and both relative humidity and absolute humidity. To some extent, desiccant performance can be described, but most the final choice of which desiccant best suits a given situation, how much of it to use, in what form, is made based on testing and practical experience. Sometimes a humidity indicator is included in the desiccant to show, by color changes, the degree of water-saturation of the desiccant. One used indicator is cobalt chloride. Anhydrous cobalt chloride is blue; when it bonds with two water molecules, it turns purple. Further hydration results in the pink hexaaquacobalt chloride complex Cl2. One example of desiccant usage is in the manufacture of insulated windows where zeolite spheroids fill a rectangular spacer tube at the perimeter of the panes of glass; the desiccant helps to prevent the condensation of moisture between the panes. Another use of zeolites is in the dryer component of air conditioning systems to help maintain the efficacy of the refrigerant.
Desiccants are commonly used to protect goods in shipping containers against moisture damage. Hygroscopic cargo, such as cocoa and various nuts and grains, are susceptible to mold and rot when exposed to condensation and humidity; because of this, shippers take precautionary measures to protect against cargo loss. Desiccants reduce the amount of moisture present in air. Desiccants come in various forms and have found widespread use in the food, packing and many manufacturing industries. Air conditioning systems can be made based on desiccants. Desiccants are used in different kinds of livestock farming to dry newborn animals, such as piglets; the use of a good desiccant can help them dry quicker and save energy, which can be crucial for the animal's development. Another use is to reduce bacteria and pathogens that thrive in wet surfaces, reducing bacteria pressure. However, some desiccants have a high pH-level, which can be harmful for an animal's skin. Desiccants are used to remove water from solvents required by chemical reactions that do not tolerate water, e.g. the Grignard reaction.
The method though not always, involves mixing the solvent with the solid desiccant. Studies show that molecular sieves are superior as desiccants relative to chemical drying reagents such as sodium-benzophenone. Sieves offer the advantages of being recyclable. Desiccator Humidity buffering Humidity indicator card Hygroscopy Moisture sorption isotherm Solar air conditioning Oxygen scavenger Sorbent Volatile Corrosion Inhibitor Lavan, Z.. "Second Law Analysis of Desiccant Cooling Systems". Journal of Solar Energy Engineering. 104: 229–236. Doi:10.1115/1.3266307. S. Sadik. "True potato seed drying over rice". Potato Research. 25: 269. Doi:10.1007/BF02357312
Precipitation is the creation of a solid from a solution. When the reaction occurs in a liquid solution, the solid formed is called the'precipitate'; the chemical that causes the solid to form is called the'precipitant'. Without sufficient force of gravity to bring the solid particles together, the precipitate remains in suspension. After sedimentation when using a centrifuge to press it into a compact mass, the precipitate may be referred to as a'pellet'. Precipitation can be used as a medium; the precipitate-free liquid remaining above the solid is called the'supernate' or'supernatant'. Powders derived from precipitation have historically been known as'flowers'; when the solid appears in the form of cellulose fibers which have been through chemical processing, the process is referred to as regeneration. Sometimes the formation of a precipitate indicates the occurrence of a chemical reaction. If silver nitrate solution is poured into a solution of sodium chloride, a chemical reaction occurs forming a white precipitate of silver chloride.
When potassium iodide solution reacts with lead nitrate solution, a yellow precipitate of lead iodide is formed. Precipitation may occur. Precipitation may occur from a supersaturated solution. In solids, precipitation occurs if the concentration of one solid is above the solubility limit in the host solid, due to e.g. rapid quenching or ion implantation, the temperature is high enough that diffusion can lead to segregation into precipitates. Precipitation in solids is used to synthesize nanoclusters. An important stage of the precipitation process is the onset of nucleation; the creation of a hypothetical solid particle includes the formation of an interface, which requires some energy based on the relative surface energy of the solid and the solution. If this energy is not available, no suitable nucleation surface is available, supersaturation occurs. Precipitation reactions can be used for making pigments, removing salts from water in water treatment, in classical qualitative inorganic analysis.
Precipitation is useful to isolate the products of a reaction during workup. Ideally, the product of the reaction is insoluble in the reaction solvent. Thus, it precipitates. An example of this would be the synthesis of porphyrins in refluxing propionic acid. By cooling the reaction mixture to room temperature, crystals of the porphyrin precipitate, are collected by filtration: Precipitation may occur when an antisolvent is added, drastically reducing the solubility of the desired product. Thereafter, the precipitate may be separated by filtration, decanting, or centrifugation. An example would be the synthesis of chromic tetraphenylporphyrin chloride: water is added to the DMF reaction solution, the product precipitates. Precipitation is useful in purifying products: crude bmim-Cl is taken up in acetonitrile, dropped into ethyl acetate, where it precipitates. Another important application of an antisolvent is in ethanol precipitation of DNA. In metallurgy, precipitation from a solid solution is a useful way to strengthen alloys.
An example of a precipitation reaction: Aqueous silver nitrate is added to a solution containing potassium chloride, the precipitation of a white solid, silver chloride, is observed. AgNO 3 + KCl ⟶ AgCl ↓ + KNO 3 The silver chloride has formed a solid, observed as a precipitate; this reaction can be written emphasizing the dissociated ions in a combined solution. This is known as the ionic equation. Ag + + NO 3 − + K + + Cl − ⟶ AgCl ↓ + K + + NO 3 − A final way to represent a precipitate reaction is known as a net ionic reaction. Many compounds containing metal ions produce precipitates with distinctive colors; the following are typical colors for various metals. However, many of these compounds can produce colors different from those listed. Other compounds form white precipitates. Precipitate formation is useful in the detection of the type of cation in a salt. To do this, an alkali first reacts with the unknown salt to produce a precipitate, the hydroxide of the unknown salt. To identify the cation, the color of the precipitate and its solubility in excess are noted.
Similar processes are used in sequence – for example, a barium nitrate solution will react with sulfate ions to form a solid barium sulfate precipitate, indicating that it is that sulfate ions are present. Digestion, or precipitate ageing, happens when a freshly formed precipitate is left at a higher temperature, in the solution from which it precipitates, it results in bigger particles. The physico-chemical process underlying digestion is called Ostwald ripening. Coprecipitation Salting in Salting out Effervescence Zumdahl, Steven S.. Chemical Principles. New York: Houghton Mifflin. ISBN 0-618-37206-7. Precipitation reactions of certain cations Digestion Instruments A Thesis on pattern formation in precipitation reactions
Gravity, or gravitation, is a natural phenomenon by which all things with mass or energy—including planets, stars and light—are brought toward one another. On Earth, gravity gives weight to physical objects, the Moon's gravity causes the ocean tides; the gravitational attraction of the original gaseous matter present in the Universe caused it to begin coalescing, forming stars – and for the stars to group together into galaxies – so gravity is responsible for many of the large-scale structures in the Universe. Gravity has an infinite range, although its effects become weaker on farther objects. Gravity is most described by the general theory of relativity which describes gravity not as a force, but as a consequence of the curvature of spacetime caused by the uneven distribution of mass; the most extreme example of this curvature of spacetime is a black hole, from which nothing—not light—can escape once past the black hole's event horizon. However, for most applications, gravity is well approximated by Newton's law of universal gravitation, which describes gravity as a force which causes any two bodies to be attracted to each other, with the force proportional to the product of their masses and inversely proportional to the square of the distance between them.
Gravity is the weakest of the four fundamental forces of physics 1038 times weaker than the strong force, 1036 times weaker than the electromagnetic force and 1029 times weaker than the weak force. As a consequence, it has no significant influence at the level of subatomic particles. In contrast, it is the dominant force at the macroscopic scale, is the cause of the formation and trajectory of astronomical bodies. For example, gravity causes the Earth and the other planets to orbit the Sun, it causes the Moon to orbit the Earth, causes the formation of tides, the formation and evolution of the Solar System and galaxies; the earliest instance of gravity in the Universe in the form of quantum gravity, supergravity or a gravitational singularity, along with ordinary space and time, developed during the Planck epoch from a primeval state, such as a false vacuum, quantum vacuum or virtual particle, in a unknown manner. Attempts to develop a theory of gravity consistent with quantum mechanics, a quantum gravity theory, which would allow gravity to be united in a common mathematical framework with the other three forces of physics, are a current area of research.
Archimedes discovered the center of gravity of a triangle. He postulated that if the centers of gravity of two equal weights wasn't the same, it would be located in the middle of the line that joins them; the Roman architect and engineer Vitruvius in De Architectura postulated that gravity of an object didn't depend on weight but its "nature". Aryabhata first identified the force to explain why objects are not thrown out when the earth rotates. Brahmagupta described gravity as an attractive force and used the term "gruhtvaakarshan" for gravity. Modern work on gravitational theory began with the work of Galileo Galilei in the late 16th and early 17th centuries. In his famous experiment dropping balls from the Tower of Pisa, with careful measurements of balls rolling down inclines, Galileo showed that gravitational acceleration is the same for all objects; this was a major departure from Aristotle's belief that heavier objects have a higher gravitational acceleration. Galileo postulated air resistance as the reason that objects with less mass fall more in an atmosphere.
Galileo's work set the stage for the formulation of Newton's theory of gravity. In 1687, English mathematician Sir Isaac Newton published Principia, which hypothesizes the inverse-square law of universal gravitation. In his own words, "I deduced that the forces which keep the planets in their orbs must reciprocally as the squares of their distances from the centers about which they revolve: and thereby compared the force requisite to keep the Moon in her Orb with the force of gravity at the surface of the Earth; the equation is the following: F = G m 1 m 2 r 2 Where F is the force, m1 and m2 are the masses of the objects interacting, r is the distance between the centers of the masses and G is the gravitational constant. Newton's theory enjoyed its greatest success when it was used to predict the existence of Neptune based on motions of Uranus that could not be accounted for by the actions of the other planets. Calculations by both John Couch Adams and Urbain Le Verrier predicted the general position of the planet, Le Verrier's calculations are what led Johann Gottfried Galle to the discovery of Neptune.
A discrepancy in Mercury's orbit pointed out flaws in Newton's theory. By the end of the 19th century, it was known that its orbit showed slight perturbations that could not be accounted for under Newton's theory, but all searches for another perturbing body had been fruitless; the issue was resolved in 1915 by Albert Einstein's new theory of general relativity, which accounted for the small discrepancy in Mercury's orbit. This discrepancy was the advance in the perihelion of Mercury of 42.98 arcseconds per century. Although Newton's theory has been superseded by Einstein's general relativity, most modern non-relativistic gravitational calculations are still made using Newton