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Who Discovered Gravity?

Gravity is the scientific term used to refer to the force exerted by a planet on objects nearby. This force is the one responsible for keeping the planets as well as the sun in their orbits. Gravity is also responsible for the development of tides. The force is important to keep high temperature in the stars’ interiors. In order to learn more about this concept, it is necessary to take a look at the history of the discovery of gravity.

History

Who discovered gravity? English physician and mathematician Isaac Newton discovered the existence of gravity in the 1680s. The theories related to gravitation formulated by Newton were based on the works done by Galileo Galilei in the 16th century. His works began with his desire to uncover the reason why light objects fall slower than heavy objects.

Newton realized that there is a specific force that caused objects to move from one place to another. He also found that without this force, the moon would fall toward our planet. With the formulation of the concept of gravitation, Sir Isaac Newton was able to provide a scientific explanation to the astronomical theories developed by Johannes Kepler.

The Principia

“Principia” is the work published by Newton regarding the gravitational force. The work focused on the universal gravitation’s inverse-square law. It also discussed the other laws of gravity. The work helped other famous scientists like Urban Le Verrier and John Couch Adams discover other planets including Neptune. In addition, this work was also used in the formulation of theories related to the discrepancy in the orbit of Mercury by Albert Einstein in 1915. Moreover, Einstein’s theory of general relativity was based on Newton’s explanations on the existence of gravity not just in the Earth but also in the universe.

Additional Information and Other Important Details

Gravity influences the motions of galaxies, planets, satellites and projectiles. Even if gravity is considered as the weakest force among the nature’s forces, it is still powerful because it holds together the different important entities in the universe. Additionally, the force identifies the escape speed for moving objects like rockets.

Other theories suggest that gravitational force differs in the various regions of the space. It was in 1798 when Henry Cavendish calculated the actual measurement of the force, which was equivalent to 6.754 10-11 Newton square meter per square kilogram. The gravitational force is the one responsible for the shape of the Earth because it holds together the materials within the vicinity of the planet.

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