Conceptual Physics (12th Edition)

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

Chapter 36 - Think and Explain: 46

Answer

Its orbit is elliptical. No.

Work Step by Step

The gravitational attraction of the sun on Mercury varies because of Mercury's elliptical path around the sun. When Mercury is closer, the pull is stronger. If Mercury had a circular orbit, there would be no variation.
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