“Planets rotate on love’s axes and apples fall to be near their beloveds.”
~ Kamand Kojouri ~
” G R A V I T Y G O N E W I L D ”
by T. Matthew Phillips
Gravity—the most universal force in the universe! All objects made of mass or energy—from the largest galaxies to the tiniest sub-atomic particles—exert gravitational pull on other objects. Everything in the universe is subject to gravity’s pull—even light. Gravity is the cosmic glue that binds the universe together. But how does gravity work? What actually creates the pull of gravity? (Spoiler alert: nobody knows!)
SIZE & DISTANCE MATTER
Gravitational pull depends on two things: (1) the size of an object, and (2) your distance from it. The bigger the object, the greater the pulling power—and the closer you are to an object, the greater the pulling power. But note, contrary to popular belief, spinning objects generate no pulling power—i.e., rotating planets do not create gravity.
LAWS of ATTRACTION
Imagine a pair of dice—just a few centimeters from one another—floating in outer space! In a day or so, the two dice will come together. Why?—because each of the dice has mass, which exerts gravitational pull, which draws the pair together as they orbit round their mutual center of mass.
All objects with mass or energy create gravity waves—which attract other objects. Remarkably, gravity waves move at the speed of light! Scientists now believe that gravity waves actually curve, twist, and distort the fabric of space and time! The size of a gravity wave depends on the size of the object that emits it—small objects create tiny ripples, while large objects create gigantic tidal waves. And because gravity waves collide, it turns the universe into a churning sea of gravity.
WHO DISCOVERED GRAVITY?
As the story goes, Sir Isaac Newton “discovered” gravity when he saw an apple fall from an apple tree. With clever mathematics, Newton proved that objects are in constant freefall towards the center of the Earth, and he also proved that all objects, regardless of their weight, fall to the ground at the same rate of speed. Both feather and hammer fall at the same rate and both hit the ground at the same time!
GRAVITY KEEPS OBJECTS IN ORBIT
Gravity pulls the Moon down towards the Earth, which is offset by the Moon’s lateral motion, which keeps the Moon in orbit round the Earth … and, likewise, gravity pulls the Earth down towards the Sun, which is offset by the Earth’s lateral motion, which keeps the Earth in orbit round the Sun … and, likewise, gravity pulls the Sun towards the heart of the Milky Way galaxy, and so on.
Gravitational force, or “G-force,” measures the amount of gravity exerted on a given object. Standing on the surface of the Earth, we experience a G-force of 1-G. Many rollercoasters exert 2-Gs to 3-Gs, which doubles or triples body weight. On looping roller coasters, at the top of the loop, you briefly experience Zero-G—weightlessness! Fighter pilots experience up to 7-Gs, and then they experience vision loss and begin to blackout from the massive forces exerted upon them!
GRAVITY ACCELERATES FREEFALL
Gravity pulls all objects downwards towards the center of the Earth at a constant speed and acceleration. Objects in freefall drop at 32 feet per second (plus an additional 32 feet with each passing second). In the absence of air resistance, objects in freefall will continue to accelerate until they hit terminal velocity (or crash into the ground!). Skydivers in freefall reach terminal velocity, of 120 mph, in about 15 seconds!!
IS GRAVITY A FORCE?
Einstein imagined that an object’s mass warps the fabric of space and time. But note, Einstein’s Theory of General Relativity is just a theory, i.e., it’s never been proved! But it does sound legit! According to Einstein, the weight of an object’s mass creates an “indentation” that curves the fabric of space and time. Okay!—picture the Moon in orbit round the Earth. Now here’s the million dollar question: does the Earth exert a magnetic-like “force” on the Moon? Or, does the Moon simply follow the curvature of space—warped by the weight of the Earth’s mass?
DOES GRAVITY WARP SPACE & TIME?
To visualize the issue, picture a bowling ball sitting on a waterbed. The weight of the bowling ball creates an “indentation” that curves the surface of the waterbed. If you roll a marble round the bowling ball, the marble spirals inward towards the bowling ball. Again, the million dollar question: does the bowling ball exert a magnetic-like “force” on the marble? Or, does the marble simply follow the curvature of space—warped by the weight of the bowling ball’s mass?
MILLION DOLLAR QUESTION
Do stars exert a magnetic-like pull on planets in orbit?—or do planets in orbit simply follow the shortest distance between two points as they curve their way round their host stars?
DID EINSTEIN GET IT RIGHT?
Assuming Einstein got it right about space being curved, then gravity is not a “force” at all, but rather, only appears to be a “force” from our perspective. According to Einstein, planets are held in orbit round their host stars—not because stars exert a magnetic-like “force” on planets, but because planets simply follow the curvature of space, which, from the planets’ perspective, appears to be a straight line in outer space!
Most physicists today believe that gravity actually warps, bends, twists, and distorts the fabric of space and time, which are woven together as one, and referred to collectively as “space-time.” Einstein’s universe has four dimensions, (1) forward-backward (length), (2) left-right (breadth), (3) up-down (height/depth), and (4) time (linear/cyclical).
GRAVITY SLOWS TIME
Speed and time are intertwined, and the faster an object moves, the more slowly time moves. Theoretically, an object moving at light speed would no longer experience time. So too, gravity and time are intertwined, and the stronger the gravitational pull, the more slowly time moves—and the weaker the gravity, the more quickly time moves, which poses a problem for GPS satellites.
In order for the GPS grid to work, clocks aboard GPS satellites—orbiting at 12,000 miles above the Earth—must be in sync with clocks down on Earth. However, at 12,000 miles up, Earth’s gravitational pull is weaker than it is on the ground, which means clocks tick faster on GPS satellites than do clocks down on Earth. Therefore, timekeepers must make periodic adjustments to clocks on GPS satellites—to keep them in sync with clocks down on Earth.
GRAVITY – HOW DOES IT WORK?
So, how does gravity work? What creates the attraction process that attracts one object to another? Do stars and planets attract one another due to a magnetic-like “force?” Or, do stars and planets attract one another due to the curvature of space? (Or, is there a third possibility?) Truth is, nobody really knows! Nobody truly understands what creates the attraction process in the first place. #TrueStory
JUST for FUN!
What would happen if you dug a tunnel—straight through the center of the Earth—all the way to China—and then jumped into that tunnel? After jumping in, your freefall quickly reaches terminal velocity, approx. 120 mph, in about 15 seconds—and your freefall continues for about 21 minutes until you reach the center of the Earth! “Uh-oh!” Wait a sec—will you come blowing out the other side at 120 mph? No! Remember, the Earth’s gravity pulls objects towards its center, and therefore, after you pass the center of the Earth, gravity then begins gently pulling you back, slowly applying the brakes to your freefall. By the time you reach the other end of the tunnel in China, your freefall will coast to a smooth stop! The entire journey to China, via the center of the Earth, takes about 42 minutes. #TheMoreYouKnow
~~T. Matthew Phillips, Esq.
Produced and Directed by TMP’s Midnight Minions
in association with Chapter Eleven Productions,
Fly-By-Night Management Services, and
Neurotica Entertainment Group
Copyright 2018 – T. Matthew Phillips, Esq.
“Science is as much of a religion as any religion has ever been.”
Dr. Nancy L. Swanson