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Math Help - Net gravitational force

  1. #1
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    Question Net gravitational force

    Hey:
    I am trying to solve this problem, but getting nowhere, any help would be greatly appreciated!

    What is the net gravitational force exerted on a 3.00 X 10^4 kg spaceship halfway between the Earth and the Moon. The average distance between the Earth and the Moon is 384,000 km. The Earth's mass is 5.98 X 10^24 kg, and the Moon's mass is 7.36 X 10^22 kg.

    I am confused.

    Thanks!
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  2. #2
    Behold, the power of SARDINES!
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    The Force of Gravity between two objects is given by
    F_g=G\frac{m_1m_2}{r^2}

    So the force of the earth on the ship is

    F_g=G\frac{m_sm_e}{d^2}

    and the force of the moon on the ship is

    F_g=G\frac{m_sm_m}{d^2}

    where m_s is the mass of the ship

    and where m_e is the mass of the earth

    and where m_m is the mass of the moon

    and where d is the distance half way inbetween

    and  G is gravitational constant

    so F_{net}=G\frac{m_sm_e}{d^2}-G\frac{m_sm_m}{d^2}=G\frac{m_s}{d^2}(m_e-m_m)

    Just plug in the numbers to finish...
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