Air Resistance

Written by Jerry Ratzlaff on . Posted in Classical Mechanics

Air resistance is a force that affects an object that moves through the air.

Air Resistance formula

(Eq. 1)  \(\large{ F_a = -kv }\)   (This formula is for smaller objects at slower speeds.)

(Eq. 2)  \(\large{ F_a = - \frac{1}{2} k \rho A v^2 }\)   (This formula is for larger objects at higher speeds.)


\(\large{ F_a }\) = force of air resistance or drag

\(\large{ \rho }\)  (Greek symbol rho) = atmosphere density

\(\large{ A }\) = cross-section area of the object

\(\large{ k }\) = air constant depends upon the shape of the object being dropped and the atmosphere density

\(\large{ v }\) = velocity of the moving object


Tags: Equations for Force Equations for Air