A gravidade newtoniana e einsteiniana não é só uma dicotomia conceitual
Silva, Maria Adna Sena da
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One of nature's most notorious and simple observations is that if you hold a stone on your hand and drop it, the stone falls. Why does it happen? The answer is: - Gravity. It was Isaac Newton (1643-1727), one of the most brilliant scientists who suggested that a mysterious force, the force of gravity by which all things are brought toward. He also said that this same force is responsible for maintaining the planets motion and the moon orbiting the sun. Although Newton's theory has had extraordinary success, explaining many facts and even predicting new facts, it is not a completely correct theory of gravitation. It fails explaining a large number of phenomena, and some of its failures made possible that Einstein propose a new theory, the Theory of General Relativity. The main target of this work is to analyze a little more deeply the concept of gravity using Classical (Newtonian) and Modern (Einsteinian) Physics. This analysis will be conducted by a Potentially Significant Teaching Unit (PSTU) based on David Ausubel's Theory of Significant Learning. The PSTU was elaborated according to the criteria established by MOREIRA (2011). This unit will be useful to assist physics teachers who want to expose the gravity concepts through a more reflective and less mathematical bias. At this way, besides introducing the study of some concepts that are part of the General Relativity Theory, the PSTU will allow students to understand the limits of Newton's Theory of Gravitation and the radical changes in the understanding and in the interpretation proposed by General Theory of Relativity for the conception of time and space.