Applying Kepler's Second and Third Laws

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  • Topic: Orbit, Kepler's laws of planetary motion, Semi-major axis
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PH 110
Lab #7

Applying Kepler's Second
and Third Laws

In this lab we examined the elliptical nature of plametary orbits. In the first part we learned the Law of Equal Areas, a law concerning the speed at which planets travel; a line connecting a planet to the sun will sweep out equal areas in equal times; "Kepler's second law means that a planet's orbital speed changes with its distance from the sun" The procedure that we follow the orbit of Mar for the year 2004 and 2005. the dot to the right of center represents the Sun's location at one focus. We choose three Widely separated slices covering equal time intervals and draw straight lines from the sun to the positions of mars on the dates that define those slices. After that we count the number of whole boxes that each slice encloses and also the partial boxes. after that we find out the average area of the slices with the help of the formula:

(Area of slice #1+ Area of slice #2+ Area of slice #3)
Average area =

Also we find the percent difference between the areas of each slice and the average area:

(Area of slice- Arerage area)
Percent difference =x 100
average area

In the second part we learned the Period- Semi- Major Axis Relationship, The square of the orbital period of a planet is directly proportional to the cube of the semi-major axis of its orbit. The third law captures the relationship between the distance of planets from the Sun, and their orbital periods. We find out the Period and the semi major axis of the planets that are in the orbit of the sun. Period we found in the internet after that we multipli 2time the period and for get the AU we apply this formula:

3v(p2)= a(AU)

In conclusion we learn different forula for each law in the second law we find the Aequal areas and the third law we find the orbit and the semi major axis.
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