Is there a "zero gravity" at all?


2017-01-30 19:00:09




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Is there a

When we see astronauts in space, floating above earth's atmosphere, we say that they experience zero gravity true zero gravity. But they are still the gravitational pull of the Earth, Moon, Sun and every other mass in the Universe. What is zero gravity? Does it exist in principle? Do you conduct experiments on the ISS in a "zero gravity"?

What good is this question, it's the fact that you don't need to go into space to experience that same "zero" or "nonzero" gravity.

Imagine the difference between what you're doing now, most likely, sit, and fall. The difference is not in the chair, not the chair and not even in the force of gravity that acts on you. You can have and still fall like on a roller coaster during the rapid descent. The difference is that your seat (floor, bed or anything else) pushes you, resisting the force of gravity. The reason that you are not experiencing the sensation of falling, is not associated with gravity, and normal force (normal force, N), as they say in physics. Not that she was opposed to the abnormal force; the normal force is simply the normal (or perpendicular) relative to the surface on which you are standing, sitting, lying down.

Now remove that power. This can be done in different ways:

  • to clean a surface that it produces, floor, chair or whatever else supports you.
  • the
  • you Can turn off the gravity, that will make you weightless.
  • the
  • you Can turn off the electromagnetic interaction between you and the atoms on the surface.

In the first case, you will just fall down as if you went on thin ice and fell through. In the second case you realize that the only reason for the existence of normal forces is that gravity pulls you towards the Earth, and the chair exerts on you is equal and opposite effect. Turning off gravity, you will reduce gravity to zero, and hence reaction force. In the third case the force of gravity will exist and pull you to the center of the Earth, but without interaction of electromagnetic forces between atoms you and just floor you'll fall through it.

These three cases are obviously very different. In the first case, gravity will pull you down, speeding you toward the center of the Earth, and will do so until you either stop accelerating because of air resistance, either until you experience the power of the Earth (or other solid). In the second case, you will experience weightlessness and will not accelerate; it will be true zero gravity. In the third case, you will accelerate towards the center of the Earth ellipsoid with the Earth's centre in one of the foci and to return to the starting point every 90 minutes.

The funny thing is, in all three cases, the initial point you will feel the same.

Weightlessness — it's sucking in the stomach, disorientation, that feeling of "zero gravity". What is even more strange, the second and third scenarios if you disable gravity or accelerating in free fall, with nothing interacting — you will not be able to distinguish between them, if you don't open your eyes. It is impossible to distinguish between gravity and uniform acceleration during free fall. It seems contradictory, but deep this is the most important principle, which led Einstein to his General theory of relativity. Today it is known as the Einstein equivalence principle.

The Principle States that there is no way to distinguish gravitational acceleration from any other form of acceleration, for example, rocket thrust. He says that if you and a starting point will be accelerated simultaneously and equally, this is equivalent to no acceleration at all. The amount of force you feel on Earth, rotating around its axis and around the Sun, identical to the amount of force you would feel if the Sun disappeared, and the Earth was just spinning in the void of space alone.

When we speak of "zero gravity", we mean that the force of gravity ceases to exist. There is in the Universe where it could conceal itself from gravity, and do not need. All we need is to disable the normal force, and therefore put themselves and the point in some conditions. We need to push exactly the same as our surroundings, without the power differential between us. So the trip on the "vomit comet", when the aircraft engines are off and he falls for 40 seconds with you on Board.

Weightlessness that you experience can be very similar to the fall, if not for the air, which does not rush past you. There is not the relative gravity between you and what you think the "bottom." If you were subjected to zero-relative gravity in this sense, you would get all kinds of physical ailments: bone loss, muscle atrophy, disturbances of vision or even blindness, the loss of all of your calluses on the feet, and your insides will increase flatulence. And the astronauts are subjected to all these risks: astronaut "Apollo-16" John young was infamous for her "space farts" on the moon, in which he cavalierly accused orange juice.

However, the feeling of zero gravity can be a total myth because nowhere in the Universe you will not be able to escape from this force. From the point of view of your physical body until your environment is accelerated with the same speed as you, the difference will not be noticeable at all. Being in conditions of weightlessness and in conditions of free fall are synonyms for your perception. Therefore, although technically nothing in this Universe can experience zero gravity, everything can fall, and therefore it is equal.


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