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Problem 1 Easy Difficulty

During the Apollo XI Moon landing, a retroreflecting panel was erected on the Moon’s surface. The speed of light can be found by measuring the time it takes a laser beam to travel from Earth, reflect from the panel, and return to Earth. If this interval is found to be 2.51 s, what is the measured speed of light? Take the center-to-center distance from Earth to the Moon to be $3.84 \times 10^{8} \mathrm{m} .$ Assume the Moon is directly overhead and do not neglect the sizes of Earth and the Moon.

Answer

$v=3 \times10^{8} m / s$

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Top Physics 103 Educators
Elyse G.

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Video Transcript

Let's say we have Here are and here is the moon. So the distance from the center off the earth to center off the moon he's given and that this distance is, um was fall it X, which is 375 884500 meter and the lesser troubles from art. And it bounces off the mirror and comes back. So it traveled the distance off. Let's go. D Ridge is a two times off X. Then, um, the speed off a light will be simply a distance traveled, which is the D divided by time, which is 2.5 seconds. So some student value for the accent Newman finally to weaken the d. From there, we get the velocity that is three times into power Pete Meter for a second.

Wesleyan University
Top Physics 103 Educators
Elyse G.

Cornell University

Zachary M.

Hope College

Aspen F.

University of Sheffield

Jared E.

University of Winnipeg