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Projectile motion is a type of motion where an object moves in a curved path through the air or through space under the influence of gravity It is a complex branch of classical mechanics which studies the motion of an object under the effect of a gravitational field. It is often used to analyze the physical behaviors of sports such as baseball and basketball, as well as the motions of rockets, satellites, and planetary bodies.
The five best examples of projectile motion are as follows.
1. Baseball: The flight of a thrown or batted baseball is a perfect example of projectile motion. When a ball is thrown or hit high into the air, it follows an arced path until it returns to earth due to gravity. This curved path can be broken down into its vertical and horizontal components which can then be used to calculate the time, distance, and velocity of the ball.
2. Basketball: The parabolic flight of a basketball after leaving the player's hands is another example of projectile motion. As the ball is shot toward the basket, it follows a curved trajectory due to the force of gravity. Similarly to baseball, the vertical and horizontal components of the flight can be used to calculate the time, distance, and velocity of the ball.
3. Rocket Launch: Rockets are examples of man-made devices that use projectile motion to reach high altitudes. When a rocket is fired, it is propelled upwards by gases created by its fuel. As the rocket ascends, it follows a curved path back to earth due to the force of gravity. This path can be broken down into its vertical and horizontal components and used to calculate the time, distance, and velocity of the rocket.
4. Satellite Orbits: Projectile motion is responsible for the motion of satellites orbiting the earth. As the satellite is launched into space, it breaks away from the gravitational field of the earth and follows an elliptical path around the planet. This path can be used to determine the time, distance, and velocity of the satellite.
5. Projectile Artillery: The trajectory of a cannonball is another example of projectile motion. When fired from a cannon, the cannonball follows a curved path due to the force of gravity and the action of the powder in the cannon. This path can be used to calculate the time, distance, and velocity of the cannonball with the assistance of calculus.