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Forces and Motion Vocabulary Review


is a push or a pull

Newton (N)

the unit for force

Balanced Forces

equal but opposite; occurs when the net forces on an object equals "zero" and the objects motion does NOT change

Unbalanced Forces

when the net forces on an object does NOT equal "zero" and the objects motion does change


force of attraction between 2 objects; determined by the mass of the objects and the distance between them


a measure of the force of gravity on an object's mass


is the amount of matter or stuff in an object


a force that acts in the opposite direction of motion

Air Resistance

a fluid frictional force on falling objects that opposes gravity


the rate in which an object moves: calculated by distance / time


the change in velocity over a period of time

Frame of Reference

used to determine if an object is in motion; the background object that you assume is stationary in order to compare it to an moving object

Newton's 1st Law of Motion

an object at rest will stay at rest and an object in motion will stay in motion until an outside force acts upon it

Newton's 2nd Law of Motion

explains the relationship between acceleration, mass and force; Force=Mass x Acceleration

Newton's 3rd Law of Motion

for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction


caused by unbalanced forces acting on an object


speed in a certain direction


force caused by non-moving charges


force caused by moving charges


it causes objects to travel in a circular path


a force exerted on an object by a person or another object


the support force exerted upon an object that is in contact with another stable object


force that is transmitted through a string, rope, cable or wire when it is pulled tight by forces acting from opposite ends

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