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Physics EE--is this feasible?

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"Does Kepler's third law apply to objects with highly irregular orbits, such as comets?"

I have access to an observatory, so I can actually do an experiment with it, and none of my physics textbooks are willing to say whether or not a comet will follow Kepler's Third Law. It will follow the first two. I suppose I could focus on a specific comet, since ISON is up right now (and observable) and I know somebody with a physical database of some very old observing data.

However, my supervisor, while great in pointing out resources, doesn't know much about the EE...

Feedback?

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Hmm, I personaly think that it seems feasable, but physics (and math) examinators are famouse for giving low marks, so be sure you are ready to risk it. I would also recommend you ask this on the Ask an IB Teacher Forum, you may get a better response there.

I believe that if you feel passionate about a topic/question you should be allowed to follow it, don´t let anybody tell you otherwise.

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I'm writing a Physics EE as well, so as far as low marks are concerned, I'm in the same boat as you. I initially wanted to do an astrophysics-y topic, but it got really complicated, involving high-powered vector calculus, really quickly, so I had to change. Kepler's 3rd law is an interesting one to investigate because there is probably a lot of data out there, but it's still part of the syllabus, which might be a problem. Usually for EEs they ask you to go beyond the HL syllabus, so you might want to consider how to expand your topic.

Hope this helps!

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Kepler 3rd law is for ellipses, our syllabus only has keplers 3rd law for circles, so it shouldn't be a problem, however, because I was trying to do an Extended Essay in physics as well, i'd rather suggest an experiment which can be conducted, I'm not sure how you will be able to simulate this process, but my teacher usually told me to come up with topics that can be experimented upon in the lab so there is sufficient primary data, and then you can link the experiment to a real world application(secondary data).

By the looks of it (personal opinion), it looks more like a Math Topic, because there is less Physics Based research and more Mathematics based calculations and derivations.

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Well, any experiment I did would use either the comet that's currently up (I'll need to see if it can actually be observed at the local observatory), or using a database (which is OK, looks like).

So while I might run into some issues from math, I have a feeling I could steer it into a far more experiment-based EE. Thanks, everyone!

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