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Reduced oscillation on higher altitudes

  1. Apr 21, 2015 #1
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data
    If a simple pendulum is taken from sea level to the top of a high mountain and started at the same angle of five degrees, it would oscillate at the top of the mountain
    a) slightly slower
    b) slightly faster
    c) at exactly the same frequency
    d) not at all - it would stop
    e) none of the above

    2. Relevant equations
    Period = ##T = 2 \pi \sqrt {\frac{l}{g}}##

    3. The attempt at a solution
    The correct answer is (a). Does this have to do with gravity being less on the mountain?

    If gravity were reduced, force (and in turn acceleration) would be reduced, which indicates a slower velocity. But period, according to the equation above, doesn't depend on mass...

    Thank you all for clearing my confusion up.
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 21, 2015 #2

    SammyS

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    Mass doesn't depend upon gravity either.
     
  4. Apr 21, 2015 #3
    If that's the case, then why does the pendulum oscillate slower?
     
  5. Apr 21, 2015 #4

    SammyS

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    Weight does depend upon gravity. Mass doesn't.
     
  6. Apr 22, 2015 #5

    rude man

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    What is g on the mountaintop compared to sea level?
     
  7. Apr 22, 2015 #6
    g (gravity) is less. But SammyS said that "mass doesn't depend on gravity". So does gravity matter or not?
     
  8. Apr 22, 2015 #7

    CWatters

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    He's right. The mass of an object doesn't depend on gravity. A man has the same mass on the moon as on earth.

    Look carefully at the equation. It contains a term for g but not m.
     
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