Physics Virtual Simulation Assignment
We are going to explore the orbital motion of the five different gravitational systems, A through E, through a virtual simulation provided by PhET. You will fill out the masses of the star and the planet. You will also measure the orbital radius and the period of the system in the Excel worksheet (highlighted area). You will learn about the properties of orbital shape, escape velocity, and Kepler’s third law.View the PhET “Gravity and Orbits” Interactive Simulation.Review the video PhET Gravity & Orbits to familiarize yourself with the various functions of the simulation before beginning your assignment.Use the Unit III Virtual Simulation Assignment Excel Worksheet(SeeAttached)for this unit. Save all of your work directly to the worksheet, and submit it in Blackboard for grading.See the Unit III Assignment Instructions(SeeAttached)to access the details for this activity.
The following resource(s) may help you with this assignment. Sheet1
1. Enter the data of mass of the star M, mass of the planet m, the period T, the distances R1 and R2 for each system from A to E. (35 points)
A B C D E
M [sun’s mass]
m [earth’s mass]
After completing the table, answer the following questions.
2. Which system shows the shortest orbital period of the planet? Which system shows the longest orbital period of the planet? (10 points)
3. Which system has the largest semi-major axis a? Which system has the smallest semi-major axis a? (10 points)
4. What affects the shape of the orbit and the period of the orbital motion of the planet, the star’s mass or the planet’s mass? (10 points)
5. List the system from the greatest elongated orbit to the smallest elongated orbit. Hint: The eccentricity e reflects the degree of the shape of the orbit. (10 points)
6.Which system has the strongest gravitational field? Which system has the weakest gravitational field? Hint: Review the definition of escape speed and look at the data of escape speed V. (10 points)
7.Can you find the relationship between the period T and the semi-major axis a to reflect Kepler’s third law based on your data? (15 points)
Unit III: Virtual Simulation Assignment
Gravity and Orbits
This assignment will allow you to demonstrate the following objectives:
3. Explain Newton’s laws of motion at work in common phenomena.
3.1 Illustrate the relation of the law of universal gravitation to Newton’s second law.
3.2 Distinguish between gravitational acceleration (g) and gravitational constant (G).
3.3 Evaluate gravitational field strength when mass and radius of an object are given.
5. Identify the total mechanical energy conservation.
5.1 Explain total mechanical energy conservation for orbital motion.
5.2 Describe escape velocity when gravitational potential energy is balanced with kinetic energy.
We are going to explore the orbital motion of the five different gravitational systems A through E through a virtual simulation provided by PheT. You will fill out the masses of the star and the planet. You will also measure the orbital radius and the period of the system in the Excel worksheet (highlighted area). You will learn about the properties of orbital shape, escape velocity, and Kepler’s third law.
View the “Gravity and Orbits” Interactive Simulation located in the syllabus.
Review the video PhET Gravity & Orbits to familiarize yourself with the various functions of the simulation before beginning your assignment. This video can be found in the syllabus.
Please read the instruction for this activity in the course syllabus.