Conceptual Physics (12th Edition)

Published by Addison-Wesley
ISBN 10: 0321909100
ISBN 13: 978-0-32190-910-7

Chapter 10 - Think and Discuss: 96

Answer

The error made is in thinking that because the astronauts feel weightless, that gravity is not acting on them very strongly. Calculation shows that gravity at a height of 62 miles high is almost as strong as it is on Earth’s surface, but the astronauts are in free fall so they feel weightless. It is also a mistake to say that the atmosphere ends abruptly at an altitude of 62 miles.
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