# Jump in Elevator in Weightlessness: Can You Do It?

• zorro
In summary: This is why people in elevators that are falling down die when they hit the bottom of the elevator shaft.In summary, if you are standing in an elevator moving downward at the same acceleration as gravity, you will be in a state of weightlessness. However, you will still be able to jump in the elevator due to the equal and opposite reaction of the floor. This is because of the repulsive electromagnetic force between your body and the elevator wall, which keeps you from passing through objects.
zorro
Suppose I am standing in an elevator which is moving downwards with an acceleration exactly equal to the acceleration due to gravity. This means that I'm in a complete state of weightlessness. If I try to jump in the elevator (with feet on floor), will I be able to do so?

Suppose I am standing in an elevator which is moving downwards with an acceleration exactly equal to the acceleration due to gravity. This means that I'm in a complete state of weightlessness. If I try to jump in the elevator (with feet on floor), will I be able to do so?

Depends on how massive the elevator is. If it's too light, you'll kick it down and the top of it will smack you in the head. If you're much lighter then the elevator, you'll fly up off the floor and bonk your head on the roof. If your relative masses are in-between, you'll both move a bit and BONK somewhere in the middle. They're all equivalent in the frame that only includes you and the elevator, but different with respect to a "stationary" object (like the Earth).

(this is all assuming you didn't think to put your hands out above you to catch the roof of the elevator as it comes hurling towards you... or you towards it.. or... well, I guess it's all relative)

Pythagorean said:
If you're much lighter then the elevator, you'll fly up off the floor and bonk your head on the roof. If your relative masses are in-between, you'll both move a bit and BONK somewhere in the middle.

Oh, great! Thanks a bloody lot, Python! After all of these years, and who knows how many thousands of wasted dollars, you finally see fit to inform me that all I need to do to get Bonked is cut some bloody elevator cables?! I hate you.

You haven't really bonked until you've bonked in an elevator in freefall.

Pythagorean said:
You haven't really bonked until you've bonked in an elevator in freefall.

As long as it ain't one of those glass-walled things; I'm terrified of heights.

edit: Hey! Wait a second! Shouldn't a Cessna 152 count? It's not all that much smaller than an elevator, and it was definitely in free-fall.

To jump up, I need to exert 'some' force on the bottom of elevator. Since I am in a state of weightlessness, I can't do that. So I think I won't be able to jump at all no matter how hard I try.

Weightlessness has nothing to do with the repulsive interaction between you and the elevator.

Even free floating in space, you can push off your spaceship and throw things.

Pythagorean said:
Weightlessness has nothing to do with the repulsive interaction between you and the elevator.

What is the origin of repulsive interaction.Do you mean to say that we can still exert 'muscular force'?

What is the origin of repulsive interaction.Do you mean to say that we can still exert 'muscular force'?
I'm not sure what Pythagorean is talking about. I, personally, am perfectly capable of being repulsive with no external assistance. Should my natural endeavors appear to fall short, I always carry an emergency stash of minced garlic gel-caps.

Lol.

Abdul, pushing your legs vertically against a freefall elevator is the same as pushing your arms horizontally against a car. The different mass of an elevator Pythagorean is talking about are analogous to different masses of the car.

You can also look for videos of astronauts moving around in the space station. The space station is practically a falling elevator.

the repulsive force I was referring to is specifically the electromagnetic force that keeps you from passing through objects that you come into contact with. When you push against the elevator, the electrons shielding your finger molecules repulse the electrons shielding the elevator wall's molecules.

Thanks

Suppose I am standing in an elevator which is moving downwards with an acceleration exactly equal to the acceleration due to gravity. This means that I'm in a complete state of weightlessness. If I try to jump in the elevator (with feet on floor), will I be able to do so?

The simple answer is yes. It's the ol' equal and opposite reaction thing. You will be motionless with respect to the elevator regardless of how fast it goes. When you jump, you exert a force on the floor and it exerts a force on you. Unfortunately, if you're trying to survive such a fall, the resulting acceleration in the upward direction is very small compared to your downward velocity with respect to the Earth.

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## 1. Can you jump in an elevator in weightlessness?

Yes, you can jump in an elevator in weightlessness. In a weightless environment, there is no force acting on your body to keep you on the ground, so jumping or floating is possible.

## 2. Is it safe to jump in an elevator in weightlessness?

It is generally safe to jump in an elevator in weightlessness as long as you are properly secured and have enough space to do so. However, it is always important to follow safety protocols and guidelines to prevent accidents.

## 3. How high can you jump in an elevator in weightlessness?

In a weightless environment, your jump height will depend on your initial velocity and how much force you exert while jumping. Without any external forces like gravity, your jump height could potentially be infinite.

## 4. What happens if you jump in an elevator in weightlessness?

If you jump in an elevator in weightlessness, you will experience a sensation of floating as you move up and down with the elevator. Your body will also feel weightless as there is no force acting on it to keep it on the ground.

## 5. Can you control your movements while jumping in an elevator in weightlessness?

Yes, you can control your movements while jumping in an elevator in weightlessness. Just like in any other environment, you can adjust the force and direction of your movements to control your trajectory and landing. However, keep in mind that you may have to account for the weightless environment and make adjustments accordingly.

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