High School Physics

Numerical problem based on parachutist & Terminal Velocity

Last updated on February 8th, 2024 at 10:06 am

The force of air resistance F acting on a parachute is given by the equation
F = 83 + 14.6v2
where v is the velocity in m/s and F is measured in newtons (N).
A parachutist of total weight 680 N is descending,
Calculate the terminal velocity of the parachutist.

At terminal velocity, air resistance equals their weight.

Weight of the parachutist = 680 kg
Air resistance formula for this case: F = 83 + 14.6v2

When, air resistance F = 680 kg, then the velocity v becomes the terminal velocity.

680 = 83 + 14.6 v2
=> v2 = (680-83)/14.6
=> v2 = 40.9
v = 6.39 m/s (terminal velocity)

Use the equation given above to explain why a heavier parachutist reaches a higher terminal velocity.

See also  Average Velocity Calculator - using Displacement
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