From our analysis of falling in air,
we found that if an object falls long enough through a fluid, it will
reach a terminal velocity. Let's look a little closer at this
- Terminal velocity occurs when the air resistance (sometimes
called "drag") force equals the weight of the falling object.
This means that:
- the object is falling with a constant velocity - its
acceleration is zero.
- heavy objects will have a higher terminal velocity than light
objects. (Why? It takes a larger air resistance force to equal the weight of a heavier object. A larger air resistance force requires more speed.) Therefore, heavy objects will fall faster in
air than light objects. (This doesn't happen in free
last update November 2, 2007 by JL