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## Main Question or Discussion Point

Why do people always use the misleading term 'escape velocity'?

If I had a rocket whose engines provided a thrust of 1N more than its weight (thus yielding a miniscule net force up), i would be able to go to mars with it, given the required amount of time, right? Thrust > Weight, so it should accelerate up...

The space shuttle, for example, never escapes the Earth's gravitational field -- nor can it ever (strictly) because of the horizontal asymptote in g vs. distance graph.

The shuttle merely reaches the required velocity to attain a stable orbit around the Earth. So, when in stable orbit, the shuttle is virtually accelerating towards to Earth at whatever g is at that distance from the centre of the Earth but does not fall down because its velocity is always tangential to its orbit (and perpendicular to its acceleration).

Am i correct? I'm having a little argument with a friend.

Cheers

If I had a rocket whose engines provided a thrust of 1N more than its weight (thus yielding a miniscule net force up), i would be able to go to mars with it, given the required amount of time, right? Thrust > Weight, so it should accelerate up...

The space shuttle, for example, never escapes the Earth's gravitational field -- nor can it ever (strictly) because of the horizontal asymptote in g vs. distance graph.

The shuttle merely reaches the required velocity to attain a stable orbit around the Earth. So, when in stable orbit, the shuttle is virtually accelerating towards to Earth at whatever g is at that distance from the centre of the Earth but does not fall down because its velocity is always tangential to its orbit (and perpendicular to its acceleration).

Am i correct? I'm having a little argument with a friend.

Cheers