Gravitational energy vs height

Open the embedded graph to change the value of h and calculate the gravitational potential energy / kg at different heights.

Can you estimate the kinetic energy needed to escape the Earth’s gravitational field?

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Gravitational field strength graph

Investigate the value of g (m/s2) varying with distance (km) from the centre of the Earth.

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PhET – Gravity force lab

Visualize the gravitational force that two objects exert on each other. Adjust properties of the objects to see how changing the properties affects the gravitational attraction.

(Choose the fullscreen option down the bottom right hand corner.)

https://phet.colorado.edu/en/simulation/gravity-force-lab

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PhET – Gravity And Orbits

Move the sun, earth, moon and space station to see how it affects their gravitational forces and orbital paths. Visualize the sizes and distances between different heavenly bodies, and turn off gravity to see what would happen without it!

(Choose the fullscreen option down the bottom right hand corner.)

https://phet.colorado.edu/en/simulation/gravity-and-orbits

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What Is Gravity?

People have a lot of different ideas about what gravity is: a downward force that stops you from flying off into space, an attraction smaller objects experience towards larger objects, or a mutual attraction between all masses. It is the last of these ideas that best reflects a scientific conception of gravity.

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The Mystery of Gravity

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Minute Physics – What is Gravity?

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Felix Baumgartner Space Jump World Record

October 14, 2012, Felix Baumgartner ascended more than 24 miles above Earth’s surface to the edge of space in a stratospheric balloon. Millions across the globe watched as he opened the door of the capsule, stepped off the platform, and broke the speed of sound while free falling safely back to Earth. Felix set three world records that day—and inspired us all to reach beyond the limits of our own realities, and reimagine our potential to achieve the incredible.

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Fermilab video – Why does light slow down in water?

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Fermilab video – Why does light bend when it enters glass?

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