Posted by **janee** on Sunday, December 11, 2011 at 9:45am.

A satellite moves in a circular orbit around the Earth at a speed of 5.8 km/s.

Determine the satellite’s altitude above the surface of the Earth. Assume the Earth is a homogeneous sphere of radius 6370 km and mass 5.98 × 1024 kg. The value of the universal gravitational constant is 6.67259 × 10−11 N · m2/

the gravitational force is the centripetal force

- physics -
**tchrwill**, Sunday, December 11, 2011 at 10:07am
When orbiting at 5.8km/s:

From Vc = sqrt(µ/r) where Vc = the velocity of an orbiting body, µ = the gravitational constant of the earth and r the radius of the circular orbit,with µ = GM, G = the universal gravitational constant and M = the mass of the central body, the earth in this instant,

r = µ/Vc^2

= 6.67259x10^-11(5.98x10^24)/5800^2

The altitude is therefore

(r - 6370)/1000 km.

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