I am trying to figure out why F=mg corresponds to question number two below.(adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({});

First lets assume a object with mass 70kg and then calcutate the force of gravity in two different scenarios:

Determine the force of gravitational attraction between the earth (m = 5.98 x 1024 kg) and a 70-kg physics student if the student is standing at sea level, a distance of 6.37 x 106 m from earth's center.

Crunching the numbers yields 688.1 N

#2

Determine the force of gravitational attraction between the earth (m = 5.98 x 1024 kg) and a 70-kg physics student if the student is in an airplane at 40000 feet above earth's surface. This would place the student a distance of 6.38 x 106 m from earth's center.

This yields: 686 Newtons at a distance of 40,000 feet.

Now use the 2nd law

F=mg (70kg)(9.8m/s^2) equals 686 N

Why is the 2nd Law calculation the same as the calculation at 40,000 feet?

I realize that this is a very small difference (less than 1%) between the two

numbers.

Thanks

**Physics Forums | Science Articles, Homework Help, Discussion**

Dismiss Notice

Join Physics Forums Today!

The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

# Gravity Calculation Question

**Physics Forums | Science Articles, Homework Help, Discussion**