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Net force and the acceleration of spacecraft - bitescis

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​use free-body force diagrams, algebraic expressions, and newton's laws of motion to predict changes to velocity and acceleration for an object moving in one. 12 pages
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Net Force and the Acceleration ofSpacecraftNet Force and the Acceleration of SpacecraftPurposeThis lesson introduces acceleration of an object (a gram scale spacecraft!) by a constantunbalanced (net external) force. Students should be thinking about how speed changes withtime and that a moving object will not come to rest when no force acts upon it. The Bitedescribes how astronomers plan to use microscale spacecraft to study exoplanets byaccelerating the spacecraft with a laser array.AudienceThis lesson was designed to be used in an introductory high school physics course.Lesson ObjectivesUpon completion of this lesson, students will be able to:ஃ determine acceleration using Newton’s second law.ஃ apply an understanding of acceleration to describe the motion of an object through motiongraphs, free body diagrams, and calculations.ஃ apply one dimensional kinematics concepts to determine applied forces.ஃ explain how scientists will send sensors to nearby stars to study exoplanets.Key Words...