# Projectile Motion on a Rotating Earth

Article

## College

College of Science

## Department

Physics Department

Boyd Edwards

## Presentation Type

Poster Presentation

## Abstract

Projectile motion is often one of the first topics discussed in an introductory physics course. This research takes that foundational understanding a step further by considering the effect the Coriolis and centrifugal forces have on projectile motion. By using Newton’s laws, including his universal law of gravitation, we derived the equations of motion for a projectile on a rotating, spherical Earth without air resistance. As expected, we see that the Coriolis force deflects projectiles to the right in the northern hemisphere and to the left in the southern hemisphere. We also see that the centrifugal force effectively reduces the magnitude of Earth’s gravitational acceleration, allowing projectiles to remain above the Earth’s surface for longer periods of time. From these equations, we plan to develop a program that returns a projectile’s final location given the projectile’s initial position, launch speed, direction, and angle relative to the Earth’s surface. Presentation Time: Thursday, 11 a.m.-12 p.m. Zoom link: https://usu-edu.zoom.us/j/82644853581?pwd=QytsZ1ZFQ3FhUlVzL0NuVHRXRzhYZz09

Logan, UT

## Start Date

4-12-2021 12:00 AM

## Share

COinS

Apr 12th, 12:00 AM

Projectile Motion on a Rotating Earth

Logan, UT

Projectile motion is often one of the first topics discussed in an introductory physics course. This research takes that foundational understanding a step further by considering the effect the Coriolis and centrifugal forces have on projectile motion. By using Newton’s laws, including his universal law of gravitation, we derived the equations of motion for a projectile on a rotating, spherical Earth without air resistance. As expected, we see that the Coriolis force deflects projectiles to the right in the northern hemisphere and to the left in the southern hemisphere. We also see that the centrifugal force effectively reduces the magnitude of Earth’s gravitational acceleration, allowing projectiles to remain above the Earth’s surface for longer periods of time. From these equations, we plan to develop a program that returns a projectile’s final location given the projectile’s initial position, launch speed, direction, and angle relative to the Earth’s surface. Presentation Time: Thursday, 11 a.m.-12 p.m. Zoom link: https://usu-edu.zoom.us/j/82644853581?pwd=QytsZ1ZFQ3FhUlVzL0NuVHRXRzhYZz09