City-Data Forum Question: Does a person weigh less, the higher their elevation?
 User Name Remember Me Password [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.

Today, 11:19 AM
 6,190 posts, read 3,280,386 times Reputation: 12546

Does a person weigh less, the higher the elevation where he is weighed? And weigh more, the lower the elevation? Since weight is the measurement of the gravity's pull on mass?

Today, 11:36 AM
 Location: Westwood, MA 3,505 posts, read 4,379,683 times Reputation: 4513
Yes. Your understanding is correct. It's also important to recognize that gravity varies from place to place around the Earth as the local density changes. The effects of centrifugal force are also important, especially comparing at different latitudes.

https://svs.gsfc.nasa.gov/11234

Today, 12:30 PM
 Location: Somewhere in northern Alabama 16,904 posts, read 51,505,945 times Reputation: 27850
The answer depends on how you mean the question. In practicality, with the center of mass at roughly 4,000 miles away, even an airplane five miles up represents a change of only around a tenth of a percent, and other effects could easily overwhelm any difference.

In theory, the answer is a little more complicated. At the center of the earth, you would "weigh" nothing. The gravitational pull would be equal on all sides. You would need an impossibly strong and heat resistant and likely radiation-proof protective bubble though.

What can be a little mind-boggling at first is the fact that you can never COMPLETELY escape Earth's gravity. Similarly, we are slightly affected be the gravitational pull of EVERYTHING in the universe that has mass, no matter how far away or small. That explains those days when you feel like you are pulled in all directions.

Today, 02:15 PM
 Location: El Pueblo de Nuestra Señora la Reina de los Ángeles del Río Porciúncula 14,091 posts, read 14,185,248 times Reputation: 9966
What Harry said. Technically, yes. In all practicality, insignificant, way less than you could see on any scale.
 Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over \$68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned. Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.