Orbit Lab

Topics: Sun, Orbit, Planet Pages: 2 (710 words) Published: March 7, 2011
* Title of the Laboratory: Modeling the orbits of planets and satellites * Objective: Formulate models to inter the shape of orbits of planets and satellites. Collect and organize data for aphelion distances and perihelion distances of objects as they orbit the sun Draw conclusions about Kepler’s first and second laws of motion. * Materials: Piece of cardboard, metric ruler, sheet of blank, sharp pencil or pen, white paper, four small pieces or tape string (25cm), two push pins * Procedure: In the book says the procedure

* Data Table
Data Table|
Object| Eccentricity (e)| d(cm)| MeasuredA| MeasuredP| Experimentale| %Error| Circle| 0| 0| 10| 10| 0| 0|
Earth| 0.017| .28| 9.8| 7.6| .009| -9.1|
Pluto| 0.25| 4| 7.75| 5.8| 26| 4|
Comet| 0.70| 2.6| 9.8| 2.9| .16| 2.51|

* Questions
1. Measure the aphelion distance, A, by measuring the distance between one focus and the farthest point in the orbit along the major axis. Record your data in the data table. 2. Measure the perihelion distance, P, by measuring the closest distance between one focus and the closest point in the orbit along the major axis. Record the data in the data table. 3. Calculate the experimental eccentricity for each of the objects and record your data in the data table. Use the following equation: 4. Error analysis calculates the percent error for each object using the experimental eccentricities compared to the known eccentricities. Record your values in the data table 5. Analyze why is the shape of the orbit with e = 0 a circle? * An object orbits in an ellipse and a circle is a ellipse where the eccentricity is zero. 6. Compare how does earth’s orbit compare to a circle? * the earth's orbit is in the shape of an ellipse, which is pretty much like an oval, however its really close to a circle, in the earth's case, just a little bit squished 7. Observe which of the orbits...
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