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ERIC Number: EJ852863
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Feb
Pages: 5
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0031-921X
Dimensional Analysis and General Relativity
Lovatt, Ian
Physics Teacher, v47 n2 p110-114 Feb 2009
Newton's law of gravitation is a central topic in the first-year physics curriculum. A lecturer can go beyond the physical details and use the history of gravitation to discuss the development of scientific ideas; unfortunately, the most recent chapter in this history, general relativity, is not covered in first-year courses. This paper discusses some topics that can be introduced with the judicious use of the dimensionless quantity GM/Rc[superscript 2]: deflection of light by a massive object, perihelion precession, gravitational redshifts, and the Global Positioning System (GPS).
American Association of Physics Teachers. One Physics Ellipse, College Park, MD 20740. Tel: 301-209-3300; Fax: 301-209-0845; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: Teachers
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A