Understanding Free Fall: Definition, Examples, and Statistics

Explore the concept of free fall, from its definition to real-world examples and statistics. Learn how gravity shapes our understanding of motion.

What is Free Fall?

Free fall is the motion of an object under the influence of gravity only, without any other forces acting upon it. This means that the object is accelerating towards the Earth at a rate of 9.81 m/s^2, regardless of its mass or shape.

Examples of Free Fall

One of the most iconic examples of free fall is a skydiver jumping out of an airplane. During free fall, the skydiver experiences the sensation of weightlessness as they accelerate towards the ground.

Another example is dropping a ball from a certain height. As the ball falls, it is in free fall until it reaches the ground, assuming no air resistance.

Case Study: Felix Baumgartner’s Stratos Jump

In 2012, Felix Baumgartner performed a free fall from the stratosphere, breaking the sound barrier in the process. This daring feat was made possible by careful planning and preparation, as well as Baumgartner’s experience as a skydiver.

Statistics on Free Fall

According to physics, the velocity of an object in free fall can be calculated using the formula v = gt, where v is the velocity, g is the acceleration due to gravity, and t is the time in seconds. This formula allows scientists to predict the motion of objects in free fall with great accuracy.


Free fall is a fundamental concept in physics, and it has practical applications in fields such as engineering and astronomy. By understanding the principles of free fall, we can better appreciate the forces that govern the motion of objects in the world around us.

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