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Newton’s Laws of Motion

Newton’s Laws of Motion

This animation demonstrates Sir Isaac Newton's three laws of motion that laid the foundation for classical mechanics.



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According to the law of action and reaction (Newton’s 3rd law), when one object exerts a force on another object, the second object simultaneously exerts a force on the first object. The two forces are equal in magnitude and opposite in direction. This means that forces always act in pairs.

This principle is also used in rockets. The action is the force produced by the expulsion of gasses of combustion from the nozzle. The reaction force propels the rocket in the opposite direction.

Our feet exert a force on the ground and the ground pushes back against our feet with the same force. The force that attracts the Earth to an object is equal to the force that attracts an object to the Earth.

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The development of celestial mechanics

This animation introduces the studies of astronomers and physicists whose works fundamentally changed our view of the universe.


The animation shows the way forces act on wheeled vehicles and vehicles with runners.

The Solar System; planetary orbits

The orbits of the 8 planets in our Solar System are elliptical.

Torsion balances

A force can be measured by measuring the twisting of the torsion wire in a torsion balance.


A spacecraft on its path is in a constant state of free fall.

Aerodynamic lift

High speed generates a lift on airplane wings due to their asymmetrical profile.


Comets are spectacular celestial bodies orbiting the Sun.

Galileo Galilei's workshop

Galileo Galilei's scientific achievements contributed greatly to the advancement of physics and astronomy.

Gravitational waves (LIGO)

Massive accelerating or orbiting bodies cause ripples in spacetime. These are called gravitational waves.

Hot air balloon

A hot air balloon is a balloon aircraft which is lifted by hot air.

Leaning Tower of Pisa (14th century)

The medieval bell tower of the Cathedral of Pisa is the most famous leaning tower of the world.

Marie Curie's laboratory

Marie Curie, the only person to win the Nobel Prize in two different sciences, is probably the most famous woman in the history of science.

Physicists who changed the world

These great scientists had a tremendous impact on the advancement in physics.

Sailing ships

Schooners, first built in the Netherlands in the 17th century, were mainly used as merchant ships.

Submarine operation

Submarines submerge and surface by changing the average density of the hull.

The physics of bicycles

Some principles of physics can be demonstrated through the functioning of bicycles.

Satellite types

Satellites orbiting the Earth can be used for civilian or military purposes.

Ancient Roman siege engines

Ancient Roman conquerors had effective siege engines developed for attacking fortifications.

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