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Imagine a space shuttle drifting along sideways in space, with its engines off and so far away from any other planet that there is no influence from outside.
Suppose that the pilot starts the rocket engine, runs it for a certain length of time and then shuts it off.
2.1 What path would the space shuttle would take while the engine is firing?
Average: = 55%
To answer this item correctly you must know:
1. A force has a direction and cannot change a velocity, which is directed perpendicular to this direction. Such a velocity remains unchanged.
Such a knowledge is not trivial. So it is promising that about 50% of our students are aware of it. As a physics teacher I would say that this figure is not good enough and needs to be improved.
2.2 What path would the shuttle take after the engine has stopped?
a) The space shuttle will go back to drifting sideways again.
b) It will keep drifting in its new direction of motion.
Average: = 82%
The best result of all items. So nothing to improve. The item can be excluded next time.