Sun April 24, 2011 By:

A hydrogen balloon released on the moon......... a)climbs up with an acceleration 6x9.8 m/s2 b)climbs up with an acceleration of 9.8/6 m/s2 c) bursts d)falls with an acceleration of 9.8/6 m/s2

Expert Reply
Mon April 25, 2011
The balloon will fall to the surface of the moon with the acceleration due to the gravity of the moon. This is assuming that the tensile strength of the balloon is sufficient to prevent bursting.

On the earth, a balloon displaces a certain volume of air. If the combined weight of the balloon and its contents is lighter than the volume it displaces, as with hydrogen filled balloons, the balloon will rise. This is the same principle that causes oil to float to the surface of water. On the other hand, a balloon heavier than the volume it displaces will fall.

Since the moon has no atmosphere, a balloon will be heavier than the empty volume it displaces, and will fall. Since there is no air resistance, the speed (velocity) of the balloon as it falls is equal to the gravitational constant of the moon (approximately 5.3 ft/sec^2) times elapsed time:
V = at
Where a is the gravitational constant.
Therefore A hydrogen ballon released on the moon falls with an acceleration of 
Sat January 14, 2017


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