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ERIC Number: EJ1082762
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015-Dec
Pages: 3
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 7
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-0031-921X
Introducing Earth's Orbital Eccentricity
Oostra, Benjamin
Physics Teacher, v53 n9 p554-556 Dec 2015
Most students know that planetary orbits, including Earth's, are elliptical; that is Kepler's first law, and it is found in many science textbooks. But quite a few are mistaken about the details, thinking that the orbit is very eccentric, or that this effect is somehow responsible for the seasons. In fact, the Earth's orbital eccentricity is small, and its only effect on the seasons is their unequal durations. Here I show a pleasant way to guide students to the actual value of Earth's orbital eccentricity, starting from the durations of the four seasons. The date of perihelion is also found.
American Association of Physics Teachers. One Physics Ellipse, College Park, MD 20740. Tel: 301-209-3300; Fax: 301-209-0845; e-mail: pubs@aapt.org; Web site: http://scitation.aip.org/tpt
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A