Calculate gravitational field strength above surface of Mars

• TalliThePrune
In summary, we are calculating the gravitational field strength at 500km above Mars' surface, using the mass and radius of Mars, as well as the constant G. After adding 500km to the radius and converting to meters, we use the formula g = GM / r2 to get a value of 2.82 N/kg. However, this value is only correct if we are at the surface of Mars, not 500km above it. The correct value at that height is 3.71 m/s2.
TalliThePrune
1. Calculate the gravitational field strength at 500km above Mars' surface.
Mass of Mars: 6.39 x 1023 kg
Radius of Mars: 3.39 x 103 km
Constant G: 6.67 x 10-11

2. I used the equation g = GM / r2
3. To begin with I added the 500km height above ground to the radius, giving 3.89 x 103 km. I then converted this to metres, which is 3.89 x 106 m.

So subbing this into the formula:
(6.67 x 10-11) x (6.39 x 1023) / (3.89 x 106)2

= 2.82 N/kg

Is this correct? Thanks in advance!

Looks fine!

TalliThePrune
Thank you!

I get 3.71 m/s2 ?

@andrevdh , did you use the same formula / figures as I did in the OP?

I'm very worried about doing this wrong as I have an exam tomorrow.

andrevdh said:
I get 3.71 m/s2 ?
This figure is OK, if you are at the surface of Mars. However, the OP asks for the value of gravitational acceleration 500 km above the surface of Mars.

TalliThePrune
SteamKing said:
This figure is OK, if you are at the surface of Mars. However, the OP asks for the value of gravitational acceleration 500 km above the surface of Mars.

Ah! Thanks so much for clarifying, I was too stressed to spot what he'd done.

1. How do you calculate gravitational field strength above the surface of Mars?

To calculate gravitational field strength above the surface of Mars, you can use the formula: g = G * (M / r^2), where g is the gravitational field strength, G is the universal gravitational constant, M is the mass of Mars, and r is the distance from the center of Mars to the object.

2. What is the universal gravitational constant?

The universal gravitational constant, denoted by G, is a physical constant that is used to calculate the gravitational force between two objects. Its value is approximately 6.674 x 10^-11 N*m^2/kg^2.

3. How does the gravitational field strength on Mars compare to that on Earth?

The gravitational field strength on Mars is approximately 38% of that on Earth. This is because Mars has a smaller mass and radius compared to Earth.

4. What is the significance of calculating gravitational field strength on Mars?

Calculating gravitational field strength on Mars is important for understanding the physics of the planet and how objects will behave on its surface. It also helps in planning and executing space missions to Mars.

5. Are there any factors that can affect the gravitational field strength above the surface of Mars?

Yes, there are a few factors that can affect the gravitational field strength above the surface of Mars, such as the distance from the center of the planet, the mass of the object, and the shape and rotation of Mars.

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