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Q & A: Dropping a tennis ball from a great height

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Most recent answer: 06/30/2013
Q:
Hi, I'm wondering what would happen if a tennis ball was dropped from the tennis court on the Dubai hotel which is very high, about 80 stories I think. Would the ball bounce or would it not survive the impact, and if it hit someone below would they survive the experience? Thanks
- jordan (age 20)
auckland
A:

Nothing spectacular would happen.   Due to air resistance the tennis ball would reach a terminal velocity of about 100 km/hour.  The ball would happily bounce unharmed.    To put it in perspective, a good pro tennis player can serve at 150 km/hour.  As for a person being harmed, how would you like to be hit in the head by a 100 km/hour tennis ball? 

 

LeeH 


(published on 06/30/2013)

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