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Equations for a falling body

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A set of equations describing the trajectories of objects subject to a constant gravitational force under normal Earth-bound conditions. Assuming constant acceleration g due to Earth’s gravity, Newton's law of universal gravitation simplifies to F = mg, where F is the force exerted on a mass m by the Earth’s gravitational field of strength g. Assuming constant g is reasonable for objects falling to Earth over the relatively short vertical distances of our everyday experience, but is not valid for greater distances involved in calculating more distant effects, such as spacecraft trajectories.

An initially stationary object which is allowed to fall freely under gravity falls a distance proportional to the square of the elapsed time. This image, spanning half a second, was captured with a stroboscopic flash at 20 flashes per second. During the first 0.05 s the ball drops one unit of distance (about 12 mm), by 0.10 s it has dropped at total of 4 units, by 0.15 s 9 units, and so on.

Image: Drop time

Gravity

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In physics, gravity (from Latin gravitas 'weight') is a fundamental interaction which causes mutual attraction between all things that have mass. Gravity is, by far, the weakest of the four fundamental interactions, approximately 1038 times weaker than the strong interaction, 1036 times weaker than the electromagnetic force and 1029 times weaker than the weak interaction. As a result, it has no significant influence at the level of subatomic particles. However, gravity is the most significant interaction between objects at the macroscopic scale, and it determines the motion of planets, stars, galaxies, and even light.

The shape of two massive galaxies in the picture are distorted due to gravity.

The Leaning Tower of Pisa, where according to legend Galileo performed an experiment about the speed of falling objects

English physicist and mathematician, Sir Isaac Newton (1642–1727)

An illustration of the Schwarzschild metric, which describes spacetime around a spherical, uncharged, and nonrotating object with mass