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Acceleration due to gravity below earth

  1. Oct 26, 2009 #1
    How does the acceleration due to gravity change as you go underneath the earth, someone told me that it increases then decreases as you approach the core, so theoretically the acceleration due to gravity at the center of the earth or the inner core is zero? So would you be weightless at the inner core?
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 26, 2009 #2
    I'm not exactly sure if you'd feel weightless...you'll be feeling quite an amount of pressure.
  4. Oct 26, 2009 #3
    If you solve the integral for the gravitational attraction from a homogeneous spherical shell, it is the same as a point source from the outside, but the gravitational attraction anywhere inside the sphere is zero.

    So if you regard the Earth as a set of concentric shells, a good first order approximation, the gravity you feel goes down in say, a gold mine, proportional to the amount of the Earth's crust that you are under. In reality there are deviations from this model. Oceans are less dense than land, and have thinner crust underneath, while the crust under mountains is thicker and so on.
  5. Oct 27, 2009 #4


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