In order to make it past Belt 1, your spuCraft is going to have to descend at the same constant speed as the belt. To think through how much thrust to apply perform the following tasks.
- Draw a free body diagram (FBD) of the spuCraft as it is passing Belt 1. Remember that only forces pushing and/or pulling on the vehicle belong on the FBD.
- (This is the most important part of the problem.) Draw a mass-acceleration diagram (MAD) for the spuCraft as it is passing Belt 1. Here, I want you to think carefully. I don’t want you to draw a generic acceleration on the diagram. You should draw the acceleration of the spuCraft assuming that it is successfully completing the challenge. Think carefully about the definition of acceleration.
- Using the forces on your FBD, and the acceleration on your MAD, write Newton’s second law. Solve for the thrust. Here’s your answer, at least when you are passing Belt 1.
- Repeat the same process for Belt 2. How does it differ?