Spark image

Trajectory shape

If we ignore the effects of air resistance all objects would follow a trajectory of exactly the same shape - this shape is called a PARABOLA.

The ball will stay vertically below the plane if the plane flies at a steady speed in a horizontal; line. The faster the plane is going when it releases the ball the further out the ball will travel each second and so the greater the range. Knowledge of projectile paths is very important when dropping supplies in famine relief areas.

schoolphysics trajectory animation

To see an animation of a trajectory click on the animation link.

© Keith Gibbs 2020