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# What does "terminal speed" mean?

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Terminal speed, also known as terminal velocity, is the maximum speed of a falling object when it can no longer accelerate from the gravitational pull or any constant force. This is due to air resistance negating the force of gravity acting on the object.

## Keep Learning

Terminal speed also applies on objects sinking in fluids. In this case, the liquid's buoyancy (instead of air resistance) counteracts the force of gravity. Objects falling in a vacuum have no terminal speed as there is no resistance to counteract the force of gravity. The term is popularized by skydivers, who use it for free falling and parachuting.

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## Related Questions

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Some examples of frictional forces include the force between shoes and the ground when walking, the force between tires and the road while driving, and the force between a falling object and the air surrounding it. Many machines also involve the use of frictional forces.

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The maximum speed of a propeller occurs at its tip, and this speed is equal to the vector resulting from its forward speed and tangential velocity. This speed is the helical velocity at the propeller tip.

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Objects fall at the same velocity regardless of their weight, if gravity is the only force acting upon them. In a vacuum, where air resistance has been eliminated, a bowling ball and a feather fall at the same speed.