The Earth, the Moon and Newton's Third Law
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The Earth and the Moon and the forces in between.
Looking up at the night sky, it's easy to think of the Moon orbiting a stationary Earth. This leads to the common misconception that the gravitational forces acting between the two bodies are unequal.
In fact these forces are mutual and the relationship can be described by Isaac Newton's Third Law of Motion, which states that for every force, there is an equal and opposite reaction force.
Derek Muller explores the misconception and explains how to reconcile Newton's Third Law with both what we observe and what's really going on in the solar system.
- Dr Derek Muller
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