A lot of misconceptions within the flat-Earth circles are present only because of the lack of understanding on how forces work on an object.
- A force is described by a vector. It has magnitude and direction.
- A single object can be affected by more than one force at the same time.
- These forces can be added together, resulting in what we call the ‘resultant’. The object will move according to the magnitude and direction of the resultant.
- Forces can cancel each other out and results in a zero resultant. But it does not mean these forces don’t exist.
- An insignificant force can be omitted in a calculation for simplification. But it doesn’t mean the force does not exist.
- A force might have the opposite direction from the resultant. But it doesn’t mean the force does not exist.
That basic knowledge on how forces and vectors work can be used to answer these kinds of misconceptions:
- “Helium balloon move upward. So, gravity does not exist.”
- “Satellites are not falling to the Earth. So, gravity doesn’t exist.”
- “Water in a glass does not appear to be attracted by the moon. So, there’s no gravity from the moon.”
- “A feather can fly away because of wind. So, gravity doesn’t exist.”
Many more similar misconceptions can be found within the flat-Earth community and can be quickly answered using this basic knowledge of physics.
- Euclidean vector – Wikipedia