Created By : Abhinandan Kumar

Reviewed By : Phani Ponnapalli

Last Updated : May 17, 2023

This terminal velocity calculator can be used to calculate the speed of a free-falling item in a gaseous or liquid medium. Skydiving, or humans falling through the air as a medium, is the most common connection to this concept of terminal velocity. For example, The terminal velocity of a baseball is determined by characteristics such as the object's mass, shape, and size, as well as the medium's density and gravitational acceleration.

Cross-section area
Drag Coefficient
Air density

What is Terminal Velocity?

The velocity of an object falling through the air increases until the gravitational attraction equals the drag force. The velocity of the object is called terminal velocity at this moment. Consider an object with a mass of mm, and the total force FF acting on it: F = mg - ½.ρ.Vt^2.A.Cd

  • Where: g – Gravitational acceleration;
  • ρ – Density of fluid;
  • v – Velocity of the object;
  • A – Cross-sectional area; and
  • Cd – Coefficient of drag

The net force is zero and the velocity is terminal when the equilibrium criteria are fulfilled. The terminal velocity equation becomes: after rearranging the terms is;

How do I calculate Terminal Velocity?

To use the terminal velocity calculator, enter the following information into the box.

  • Step 1: Choose your object's shape. 
  • Step 2: Calculate the object's mass.
  • Step 3: In the cross-sectional region, fill in the missing information.
  • Step 4: Drag coefficient should be entered.
  • Step 5: Calculate the fluid medium's density. 
  • Step 6: Enter in the gravitational acceleration (the default is the gravitational acceleration of the Earth).
  • Step 7: The terminal velocity of the calculator will be returned.

Factors affecting Terminal Velocity

The terminal velocity is affected by two sorts of factors: area, mass, and drag coefficient depending on the object, and density and gravitational acceleration depending on the environment.

Let's have a look at each object-dependent factor individually:

Drage Coefficient: The drag coefficient is a quantity that is determined by the geometry of the item. As a result, a more streamlined body will have less drag than a blunt body.

Area: The larger the object's surface area, the lower the object's terminal velocity. A skydiver's terminal velocity in a belly-to-earth trajectory, for example, will be lower than if he pulls his limbs in.

Mass: The terminal velocity of a heavier object is higher than that of a lighter thing. A penny's terminal velocity is lower than that of a bullet.

And there are two components that are dependent on the environment:

Density: The terminal velocity increases as the density of the fluid medium decreases. Varied planetary conditions could also be the source of these different media or density variances.

Gravitational Acceleration: This parameter is particularly useful for different planets. The change in gravitational acceleration is proportional to the change in terminal velocity.

Find similar concepts related to physics all under one roof at and resolve all your doubts as a part of your homework or assignment.

FAQs on Terminal Velocity Calculator

1. What is the definition of terminal velocity?

The highest speed at which an object can travel while in free fall is called terminal velocity. The force of gravity and the force of drag are equal at a certain speed, therefore the item does not accelerate too much further.

2. What is the procedure for determining terminal velocity?

To find out the terminal velocity, do the following:

  1. Calculate the mass of the object by multiplying it by the gravitational acceleration.
  2. Substitute the product of the drag coefficient and the anticipated area for the outcome.
  3. Multiply the previous step's number by two.
  4. Divide the result by the fluid density.
  5. Calculate the object's final velocity by taking the square root of the result.

3. Is every object's terminal velocity the same?

Yes, it varies depending on the object. It isn't a predetermined speed. The speed at which an object's deceleration due to wind resistance equals its acceleration due to gravity is known as terminal velocity.

4. Is weight a factor in determining terminal velocity?

The object's weight has an impact on the object's air drag force and, as a result, its final velocity.