Lesson 4 Lab VanBlaricom.docx - Name Jeremiah VanBlaricom...

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Name: Jeremiah VanBlaricom Lesson 4 Lab - Planetary Orbit Simulator Background Material Answer the following questions after reviewing the “Kepler's Laws and Planetary Motion” and “Newton and Planetary Motion” background pages. Question 1: on the right. Question 2: (1 point) When written as P 2 = a 3 Kepler's 3rd Law (with P in years and a in AU) is applicable to … a) any object orbiting our sun. b) any object orbiting any star. c) any object orbiting any other object. Question 3: (1 point) The ellipse to the right has an eccentricity of about … a) 0.25 b) 0.5 c) 0.75 d) 0.9 Question 4: (1 point) For a planet in an elliptical orbit to “sweep out equal areas in equal amounts of time” it must … a) move slowest when near the sun. b) move fastest when near the sun. c) move at the same speed at all times. d) have a perfectly circular orbit. NAAP – Planetary Orbit Simulator 1/9 Kepler’s 1st Law Kepler’s 2nd Law Kepler’s 3rd Law Newton’s 1st Law planets orbit the sun in elliptical paths planets with large orbits take a long time to complete an orbit planets move faster when close to the sun only a force acting on an object can change its motion
Question 5: (1 point) If a planet is twice as far from the sun at aphelion than at perihelion, then the strength of the gravitational force at aphelion will be ____________ as it is at perihelion. a) four times as much b) twice as much c) the same d) one half as much e) one quarter as much Kepler’s 1st Law If you have not already done so, launch the NAAP Planetary Orbit Simulator . Open the Kepler’s 1 st Law tab if it is not already (it’s open by default). Enable all 5 check boxes. The white dot is the “simulated planet”. One can click on it and drag it around. Change the size of the orbit with the semimajor axis slider. Note how the background grid indicates change in scale while the displayed orbit size remains the same. Change the eccentricity and note how it affects the shape of the orbit. Be aware that the ranges of several parameters are limited by practical issues that occur when creating a simulator rather than any true physical limitations. We have limited the semi-major axis to 50 AU since that covers most of the objects in which we are interested in our solar system and have limited eccentricity to 0.7 since the ellipses would be hard to fit on the screen for larger values. Note that the semi-major axis is

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