Calculating temperature: escape velocity of helium atoms

To escape Earth’s gravity, an object near the top of the atmosphere (at an altitude of 100 km) must travel away from Earth at 11.1 km/s. This speed is called the
escape velocity . At what temperature would helium atoms have an rms speed equal to the escape velocity?

Strategy

Identify the knowns and unknowns and determine which equations to use to solve the problem.

Solution

Identify the knowns:
v is the escape velocity, 11.1 km/s.

Identify the unknowns: We need to solve for temperature,
T . We also need to solve for the mass
m of the helium atom.

Determine which equations are needed.

To get the mass
m of the helium atom, we can use information from the periodic table:

This temperature is much higher than atmospheric temperature, which is approximately 250 K
$(\mathrm{-25}\phantom{\rule{0.2em}{0ex}}\text{\xb0}\text{C or}\phantom{\rule{0.2em}{0ex}}-10\phantom{\rule{0.2em}{0ex}}\text{\xb0}\text{F})$ at high elevation. Very few helium atoms are left in the atmosphere, but many were present when the atmosphere was formed, and more are always being created by radioactive decay (see the chapter on nuclear physics). The reason for the loss of helium atoms is that a small number of helium atoms have speeds higher than Earth’s escape velocity even at normal temperatures. The speed of a helium atom changes from one collision to the next, so that at any instant, there is a small but nonzero chance that the atom’s speed is greater than the escape velocity. The chance is high enough that over the lifetime of Earth, almost all the helium atoms that have been in the atmosphere have reached escape velocity at high altitudes and escaped from Earth’s gravitational pull. Heavier molecules, such as oxygen, nitrogen, and water, have smaller rms speeds, and so it is much less likely that any of them will have speeds greater than the escape velocity. In fact, the likelihood is so small that billions of years are required to lose significant amounts of heavier molecules from the atmosphere.
[link] shows the effect of a lack of an atmosphere on the Moon. Because the gravitational pull of the Moon is much weaker, it has lost almost its entire atmosphere. The atmospheres of Earth and other bodies are compared in this chapter’s exercises.

Questions & Answers

A closely wound search coil has an area of 4cm^2,1000 turns and a resistance of 40ohm. It is connected to a ballistic galvanometer whose resistance is 24 ohm. When coil is rotated from a position parallel to uniform magnetic field to one perpendicular to field,the galvanometer indicates a charge

well when you apply a small electric field to a conductor that causes to add a little velocity to charged particle than usual, which become their average speed, that is what we call a drift.

two point charges +30c and +10c are separated by a distance of 80cm,compute the electric intensity and force on a +5×10^-6c charge place midway between the charges

Heat is the condition or quality of being hot While Temperature is ameasure of cold or heat, often measurable with a thermometer

Abdul

Temperature is the one of heat indicators of materials that can be measured with thermometers, and Heat is the quantity of calor content in material that can be measured with calorimetry.

Gamma

the average kinetic energy of molecules is called temperature.
heat is the method or mode to transfer energy to molecules of an object but randomly, while work is the method to transfer energy to molecules in such manner that every molecules get moved in one direction.

Adnan

2. A brass rod of length 50cm and diameter 3mm is joined to a steel rod of the same length and diameter. What is the change in length of the combined rod at 250°c( degree Celsius) if the original length are 40°c(degree Celsius) is there at thermal stress developed at the junction? The end of the rod are free to expand (coefficient of linear expansion of brass = 2.0×10^-5, steel=1.2×10^-5k^1)