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Pilot in a plane

  1. Sep 12, 2009 #1
    Hi, I have a gravity question. If a pilot is sitting in a plane going

    a) level with the ground
    b) upside down and level w/the ground
    c) going straight into the air
    d) coming down towards the earth

    which direction will the pilot feel the most gravity? My guess is C, but I don't know if I'm right or wrong and have no one with a Physics background to tell me what is the right answer and why,


  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 12, 2009 #2


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    Staff: Mentor

    Is this a homework question? If it is, these questions belong in our homework section.

    If the speed is constant, the gravitation force is the same in every direction.
  4. Sep 12, 2009 #3
    What a terrible question, who wrote this? The pilot feels the same gravity no matter what the airplane is doing.
  5. Sep 12, 2009 #4
    No, not a homework question. I'm an adult student and ran across some gravity questions I'd never thought of before. I'm thinking of becoming a pilot, hence my queries. Thanks for your response. There is an answer to this question though, and one of the answers posted is one of the answers. But, I don't know which one it is. Any further thoughts, feel free to help me out. Thank you!
  6. Sep 12, 2009 #5
    Gravity points in one direction, namely down. That does not change no matter what the airplane is doing. The person will feel an acceleration, which can be expressed in terms of G's, due to the airplane undergoing curvilinear motion.

    Based on the question, the answer is going to be c, but it's a terribly written question that uses the wrong words. I have to ask where this question comes from?
  7. Sep 12, 2009 #6
    Don't know who wrote it, but I can't seem to figure out the answer. I'm running into these questions that look like you have to already be a pilot to know the answer. It's in a flight book for qualifying for a pilots license.
  8. Sep 12, 2009 #7


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    Staff: Mentor

    I gave the answer: it is none of the above. Since no accelration is stated, the force felt is the same in every case.
  9. Sep 12, 2009 #8


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    Staff: Mentor

    The question doesn't say anything about acceleration or curvilinear motion. Therefore, the force felt by the pilot must be the same in every case.
  10. Sep 12, 2009 #9
    Hey everyone,

    Yes, I know the question is VERY POORLY worded. It came out of a book on becoming an aviator. Unfortunately, I'm not the one writing the questions otherwise I'd have put the answers in the back of the book. But, this is the question (and the graphics are even worse!).

    I guessed "C" too because it didn't offer any information on curvilinear motion or acceleration, I had to guess it was "C" because there would be more force in an upward climb. I'm with Cyrus, on this one. Guessing you're a pilot. Thank you.
  11. Sep 12, 2009 #10


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    Science Advisor

    Did the problem actually say "feel the most gravity" or "feel the most force"?
  12. Sep 12, 2009 #11
    The question specifically says Gravity. I never said the question says anything about acceleration or curvilinear motion. I said acceleration and or curvilinear motion is the result of the pilot feeling accelerations, expressed in terms of g's. The question is so poorly worded, I'd rather have the OP get a proper answer, and understand why the question is bad.
  13. Sep 12, 2009 #12

    It said "feel the most gravity".
  14. Sep 12, 2009 #13
    Throw away that book and get a proper Jeppsen PPL kit. You can get a lot of this stuff free from the FAA online if you don't mind reading PDFs.
  15. Sep 12, 2009 #14
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