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Newton's Law of Motion

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In this experiment I will attempt to prove two of Newton's Laws of Motion. Both the second and third laws apply to different degrees. Newton's second law states that the body's rate of change of momentum is proportional to the force causing it. For the purpose of this experiment we must keep in mind that force is equal to mass times acceleration. Newton's third law states that to every action, or force, there is an equal and opposite reaction.

In the experiment I will take two balls of different mass, a basketball and a tennis ball. I will place the tennis ball on top of the basketball and drop them simultaneously. As the two balls are dropped they will separate slightly. The basketball will hit the ground first, rebounding and hitting the second ball which is still on the way down. When this happens, the direction of the second ball will change; it will fly high into the air and its speed will increase.

This reaction is explained by Newton's Second and Third Laws of Motion. The Second Law of Motion addresses the reason for using two balls with substantially different masses. If the second ball was a soccer ball the result of the experiment would be completely different because the larger the mass the less it would accelerate.

The main law of motion proven in this experiment is Newton's Third Law. As the basketball hits the tennis ball two actions take place. They are equal and opposite in force. An action is created when the basketball pushes the tennis ball and the equal and opposite reaction is the tennis ball pushing off the basketball.



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