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P10-04: Elliptical Orbits

P10-04: Elliptical Orbits


When you go faster than the 8km/s that gives you a circular orbit, you achieve an elliptical orbit.  Although, you can actually say that ANY projectile motion follows an elliptical path.  Stay tuned!

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Start off with this INTERACTIVE FIGURE on drawing ellipses and circles.  It's surprisingly helpful.  Watch my video lesson and check out this SCREENCAST.  When you get the chance, take a look at p. 195 in the textbook for an interesting sidebar on satellites.  That puts a lot of this together to answer a question you may have always had about worldwide communications.

Source: Hewitt, P. G. (2015). Conceptual Physics (12th ed.). Boston, MA: Pearson.

My Explanation of Elliptical Orbits