Principle of Superposition of Gravitational Forces
- Newton’s law of gravitation answers only the interaction between two particles.
- If the system contains ‘n’ particles there are n(n – 1)/2 such interactions.
According to the principle of superposition, if each of these interactions acts independently and uninfluenced by the other bodies, the results can be expressed as the vector summation of these interactions;
F = F12 + F13 + F14 . . . . . . + F1n.
It states that:
“The resultant gravitational force F acting on a particle due to the number of point masses is equal to the vector sum of forces exerted by the individual masses on the given particle”.