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Newton's Laws of Motion on an airplane

  1. Feb 23, 2008 #1
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data
    Your airplane is caught in a brief, violent downdraft. To your amazement, the pretzels on your seatback tray rise vertivally, and you estimate their upward acceleration relative to the plane at 2 m/s^2. What's the donward acceleration of the plane?

    ANy suggestions are highly aprreciated!!!!

    2. Relevant equations

    3. The attempt at a solution

    what I know is that if the plane is in such a situation it's subject to the gravitational force only, but why we're given this pretzels acceleration?
  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 23, 2008 #2
    Stated another way, the plane is heading downward so quickly that it has a greater acceleration than gravity by 2 m/s^2. If that is true, what is the downward acceleration of the plane?

    It should give you gravity as either 9.8 or 9.81 m/s^2.
  4. Feb 24, 2008 #3
    so the plane's acceleration is 11.8 m/s^2 downward. We should sum the gravitation acceleration and the pretzels.
  5. Feb 24, 2008 #4
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