# The Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy (1729)/Book 1/Section 3

*Of the motion of bodies in eccentric conic sections.*

Proposition XI. Problem VI.

*If a body revolves in a ellipsis: it is required to find the law of centripetal force tending to the focus of the ellipsis*. Pl. 4. Fig. 2.

Let S be the focus of the ellipsis. Draw *SP*
cutting the diameter *DK* of the ellipsis in *E*, and the ordinate *Qv* in *x*; and compleat the parallelogram *QxPR*. It is evident than *EP*, is equal to the greater semi-axis
*AC*: for drawing *HI* from the other focus *H*
of the ellipsis parallel to *EC*, because *CS*, *CH* are equal *ES*, *EI* will be also equal, so that *EP* is the
half sum of *PS*, *PI* that is, (because of the parallels *HI*, *PR*, and the equal angles *IPR*, *HPZ*) of *PS*, *PH*, which taken together are equal to the whole axis 2*AC*. Draw *QT* perpendicular to *SP*,
and putting *L* for the principal latus rectum of the ellipsis (or for ) we shall have L × QR to *L* x *Pv* as *QR* to *Pv*, that is, as *PE* or *AC* to *PC*;
and *L* x *Pv* to *GvP* as 'L* to *Gv*; and *GvP* to*
as to '; and (by corol. 2. lem. 7.)
the points *Q* and *P* coinciding, is to in the
ratio of equality; and or is to as
to , that is, as to or (by lem. 12)
as to . And compounding all those ratio's together,
we shall have *L* x *QR* to as or to ,
or as 2*PC* to *Gv*. But the points
*Q* and *P* coinciding, 2*PC* to *Gv* are equal. And
therefore to these, will be also equal. Let those equals be
drawn in and will become equal to
. And
therefore by corol. 1. and 5. prop. 6.) the centripetal force is reciprocally as ,
that is, reciprocally in the duplicate ratio of the
distance *SP*. *Q. E. I.*

*The same otherwise*

Seeing the force tending to the centre of the ellipsis,
by which the body *P* may revolve in that ellipsis.
is (by corol. 1. prop. 10.) as the distance *CP* of
the body from the centre *C* of the ellipsis; let *CE*
be drawn parallel to the tangent *PR* of the ellipsis;
and the force, by which the same body *P* may revolve
about any other point *S* of the ellipsis. if *CE* and
*PS* intersect in *E*, win be as, (by cor. 3. prop,
7.) that is, if the point *S* is the focus of the ellipsis,
and therefore *PE* be given, as reciprocally. *Q. E. I.*

With the same brevity with which we reduced the fifth problem to the parabola and hyperbola, we might do the like here: But because of the dignity of the problem and its use: in what follows. I shall confirm the other cases by particular demonstrations.

Proposition XII. Problem VII.

*Suppose a body to move in an hyperbola: it is required to find the law of centripetal force tending to the focus of that figure.* Pl. 5. Fig. 1.

Let *CA*, *CB* be the semi-axes of the hyperbola;
*PG*, *KD* other conjugate diameters; *PF* a perpendicula
to the diameter *KD*; and *Qv* an ordinate to
the diameter *GP*. Draw *SP* cutting the diameter
*DK* in *E*, and the ordinate *Qv* in *x*, and compleat
the parallelogram *QRPx*. It is evident that *EP* is
equal to the semi-transverse axe *AC*; for, drawing
*HI*, from the other focus *H* of the hyperbola, parallel
to *EC*, because *CS*, *CH* are equal, *ES*, *EI* will
be also equal; so that *EP* is the half difference of
*PS*, *PI*; that is, (because of the parallels *IH*, *PR*,
and the equal angles *IPR*. *HPZ*) if *PS*, *PH,* the
difference of which is equal to the whole axis 2*AC*.
Draw *QT* perpendicular to *SP*. And putting *L* for the
principal latus rectum of the hyperbola, (that is, for
) we shall have *LX* *QR* to *L* x * Iv* as *QR* to *Pv*,
or *Px* to *Pv*, that is, (because of the similar triangles
*Pxv*, *PEC*) as *PE* to *PC*, or *AC* to *PC*. And *L* x *Pv* will be to *Gv* x *Pv as *L* to *Gv*; and (by*
the properties of the conic sections) the rectangle *GvP*
is to as to ; and (by cor. 2. lem. 7.)
to , the points *Q* and *P* coinciding, becomes
a ratio of equality; and Qx or is to
as to , that is, as to ,
or (by lem. 12.) as to : and, compounding
all those ratio's together, we shall have *L* x *QR* to
as or to , or as 2*PC* to *Gv*.
But the points *P* and *Q* coinciding, 2*PC* and *Gv*
are equal. And therefore the quantities *L* x *QR*
and , proportional to them, will be also equal. *Q. E. I.*

Let those equalsbe drawn into, and we shall
have to . And therefore (by cor. 1 & 5. prop. 6.) the centripetal force is reciprocally
as , that is, reciprocally in the
duplicate ratio of the distance *SP*. *Q. E. I.*

Find out the force tending from the centre *C* of the
hyperbola. This will be proportional to the distance
*CP*. But from thence (by cor. 3. prop. 7.) the
force tending to the focus *S* will be as , that is,
because *PE* is given, reciprocally as. *Q. E. I.*

And the same way it may be demonsŧrated, that the
body having its centripetal changed into a centrifugal
force, will move in the conjugate hyperbola.

Lemma XIII.

*The latus rectum of a parabola belonging to any vertex is quadruple to the disŧance of that vertex from the focus of the figure.*

This is demonstrated by the writers on the conic sections.

Lemma XIV.

*The perpendicular let fall from the focus of a parabola on its tangent, if a mean proportional between the dislances of the focus from the point of contact, and from the principal vertex of the figure.* Pl. 5. Fig. 2.

For, let *AP* be the parabola, *S* its focus, *A* its principal
vertex, *P* the point of contact, *PO* an ordinate
to the principal diameter, *PM* the tangent meeting
the principal diameter in *M* and *S*N the perpendicular
from the focus on the tangent. join *AM* and
because of the equal lines *MS* and *SP*, *MN* and
*NP*, *MA* and *AO*; the right lines *AN*, *OP*, will
be parallel; and thence the triangle *SAN* will be
right angled at *A*, and similar to the equal triangles
*SNM*, *SNP*: therefore *PS* is to *SN* as *SN* to
*SA*. *Q. E. D.*

Cor 1. is to as *PS* to *SA*.

Cor. 2. And because *SA* is given, will
be as *PS.*

Cor. 3. And the concourse of any tangent *PM*
with the right line *SN*, drawn from the focus perpendicular
on the tangent, falls in the right line *AN*,
that touches the parabola in the principal vertex.

Proposition XIII. Problem VIII.

*If a body moves in the perimeter of a parabola: it it required to find the law of the centripetal force tending to the focus of that figure.* Pl. 5. Fig. 3.

Retaining the construction of the preceding lemma,
let *P* be the body in the perimeter of the parabola;
and from the place *Q* into which it is next to succeed
draw *QR* parallel and *QT* perpendicular to
*SP*, as also *Qv* parallel to the tangent, and meeting
the diameter *PG* in *v*, and the distance *SP* in *x*. Now,
because of the similar triangles *Pxv*, *SPM*, and of
the equal sides *SP*, *SM* of the one, the sides *Px* or
*QR* and *Pv* of the other will be also equal. But
(by the conic sections) the square of the ordinate *Qv*
is equal to the rectangle under the latus rectum and
the segment *Pv* of the diameter, that is, (by lem. 13.)
to the rectangle 4*PS* x *Pv*, or 4*PS* x *QR*; and the
points *P* and *Q* coinciding, the ratio of *Qv* to *Qx*
(by cor. 2 lem. 7.) becomes a ratio of equality. And
therefore , in this case. becomes equal to the
rectangle 4*PS* x *QR*. But (because of the similar
triangles *QxT*, *SPN*) is to as to
, that is (by cor. 1. lem. 14.) as *PS* to *SA*;
that is, as 4*PS* x *QT* to 4*SA* x *QR*, and therefore (by prop. 9. lib. 5. elem.) and 4*SA* x *QR*
are equal. Multiply these equals by , and
will become equal to : and
therefore (by cor. 1. and 5. prop. 6.) the centripetal
force is reciprocally as ; that is, because
4*SA* is given, reciprocally in the duplicate ratio of
the distance *SP*. *Q. E. I.*

Cor. 1. From the three last propositions it follows,
that if any body *P* goes from the place *P* with
any velocity in the direction of any right line *PR*,
and at the same time is urged by the action of a centripetal
force, that is reciprocally proportional to the
square of the distance of the places from the centre;
the body will move in one of the conic sections,
having its focus in the centre of force; and the contrary.
For the focus, the point of contact, and the
position of the tangent being given, a conic section
may be described, which at that point shall have a
given curvature. But the curvature is given from
the centripetal force and the bodies velocity given:
and two orbits mutually touching one the other, cannot
be described by the same centripetal force and the
same velocity.

Cor. 2. If the velocity, with which the body
goes from its place *P*, is such, that in any infinitely
small moment of time the lineola *PR* may be
thereby described; and the centripetal force such as in
the same time to move that body through the space
*QR*; the body will move in one of the conic sections,
whose principal latus rectum is the quantity
in its ultimate state, when the lineolæ *PR*, *QR* are diminished *in infinitum*. In these corollaries, I consider
the circle as an ellipsis; and I except the case,
where the body descends to the centre in a right line.

Proposition XIV. Theorem VI.

*If several bodies revolve about one common centre, and the centripetal force is reciprocally in the duplicate ratio of the distance of places from the centre; I say, that the principal latera recta of their orbits are in the duplicate ratio of the area's, which the bodies by radii drawn to the centre describe in the same time.* Pl. 6. Fig. 1.

For (by cor. 2. prop. 13.) the latus rectum *L* is
equal to the quantity in its ultimate state when
the points *P* and *Q* coincide. But the lineola *QR*
in a given time is as the generating centripetal force;
that is (by supposition) reciprocally as . And
therefore is as that is, the latus
rectum *L* is in the duplicate ratio of the area *QT* x *ST*.
*Q. E. D.*

Cor. Hence the whole area of the ellipsis, and
the rectangle under the axes, which is proportional to
it, is in the ratio compounded of the subduplicate ratio
of the latus rectum, and the ratio of the periodic
time. For the whole area is as the area *QT* x *SP*
described in a given time, multiplied by the periodic
time.

Proposition XV. Theorem VII.

*The same things being supposed, I say that the periodic times in ellipses are in the sessquiplicate ratio of their greater axes.*

For the lesser axe is a mean proportional between
the greater axe and the latus rectum; and therefore the
rectangle under the axes is in the ratio compounded
of the subduplicate ratio of the latus rectum and the
sesquiplicate ratio of the greater axe. But this rectangle
(by cor. prop. 14) is in a ratio compounded of
the subduplicate ratio of the latus rectum and the ratio
of the periodic time. Subduct from both sides
the subduplicate ratio of the latus rectum, and there
will remain the sesquiplicate ratio of the greater axe,
equal to the ratio of the periodic time. *Q. E. D.*

Cor. Therefore the periodic times in ellipses are the same as in circles whose diameters are equal to the greater axes of the ellipses.

Proposition XVI. Theorem VIII.

*The same things being supposed, and right lines being drawn to the bodies that shall touch the orbits, and perpendiculars being let fall on the tangents from the common focus: I say that the velocities of the bodies are in a ratio compounded of the ratio of the perpendiculars inversely, and the subduplicate *ratio of the principal latera recta directly.* Pl. 6. Fig; 2.*

From the focus *S*, draw *SY* perpendicular to the
tangent *PR*, and the velocity of the body *P* will be
reciprocally in the subduplicate ratio of the quantity
. For that velocity is as the infinitely small arc
*PQ* described in a given moment of time, that is. (by
lem. 7.) as the tangent *PR*; that is, (because of the
proportionals *PR* to *QT* and *SP* to *SY*) as ,
or as *SY* reciprocally and directly; but
*SP* x *QT* is as the area described in the given time,
that is (by prop. 14.) in the subduplicate ratio of the
latus rectum, *Q. E. D.*

Cor. 1. The princ[i]pal latera recta are in a ratio compounded of the duplicate ratio of the perpendiculars and the duplicate ratio of the velocities.

Cor. 2. The velocities of bodies, in their greatest and least distances from the common focus, are in the ratio compounded of the ratio of the distance inversely, and the subduplicate ratio of the principal latera recta directly. For those perpendiculars are now the distances.

Cor. 3. And therefore the velocity in a conic section, at its greatest or least distance from the focus. is to the velocity in a circle at the same distance from the centre, in the subduplicate ratio of the principal latus rectum to the double of that distance.

Cor. 4. The velocities of the bodies revolving in ellipses, at their mean distances from the common focus, are the same as those of bodies revolving in circles, at the same distances; that is (by cor. 6. prop, 4-) reciprocally in the subduplicate ratio of the distaces. For the perpendiculars are now the lesser semi-axes, and these are as mean proportionals between the distances and the latera recta. Let this ratio inversely be compounded with the subduplicate ratio of the latera recta directly, and we shall have the subduplicate ratio of the distances inversely.

Cor. 5. In the same figure, or even in different figures, whose principal latera recta are equal, the velocity of a body is reciprocally as the perpendicular let fall from the focus on the tangent.

Cor. 6. In a parabola, the velocity is reciprocally in the subduplicate ratio of the distance of the body from the focus of the figure; it is more variable in the ellipsis, and less in the hyperbola, than according to this ratio. For (by cor. 2. lem. 14.) the perpendicular let fall from the focus on the tangent of a parabola is in the subduplicate ratio of the distance. In the hyperbola the perpendicular is less variable, in the ellipsis more.

Cor. 7. In a parabola, the velocity of a body
at any distance from the focus, is to the velocity
of a body revolving in a circle at the same distance
from the centre, in the subduplicate ratio of
the number 2 to 1; in the ellipsis it is less, and in the
hyperbola greater, than according to this ratio. For
(by cor. 2. of this prop.) the velocity at the vertex of
a parabola is in this ratio, and (by cor. 6. of this prop.
and prop. 4.) the same proportion holds in all distances.
And hence also in a parabola, the velocity is every
where equal to the velocity of a body revolving in
a circle at half the distance; in the ellipsis it is less,
and in the hyperbola greater.

Cor. 8. The velocity of a body revolving in any conic section is to the velocity of a body revolving in a circle at the distance of half the principal latus rectum of the section, as that distance to the perpendicular let fall from the focus on the tangent of the section. This appears from cor. 5.

Cr. 9. Wherefore since (by cor. 6. prop. 4.) the
velocity of a body revolving in this circle is to the
velocity of another body revolving in any other
circle, reciprocally in the subduplicate ratio of the distances;
therefore *ex æquo* the velocity of a body revolving
in a conic section will be to the velocity of
a body revolving in a circle at the lime distance, as a
mean proportional between that common distance and
half the principal latus rectum of the section, to the
perpendicular let fall from the common focus upon the
tangent of the section.

Proposition XVII. Problem IX.

*Supposing the centripetal force to be reciprocally proportional to the squares of the disŧances of places from the centre, and that the absolute quantity of that force is known; it is required to determine the line, which a body will describe that is let go from a given place with a given velocity in the direction of a given right line.*

Let the centripetal force tending to the point *S*
(Pl. 6. *Fig.* 3 .) be such, as will make the body *p* revolve
in any given orbit *pq*; and suppose the velocity of this
body in the place *p* is known. Then from the place
*P*, suppose the body *P* to be let go with a given velocity in the direction of the line *PR*; but by virtue
of a centripetal force to be immediately turned aside
from that right line into the conic section *PQ*. This
the right line *PR* will therefore touch in *P*. Suppose
likewise that the right line *pr* touches the orbit
*pq* in *p*; and if from *S* you suppose
let fall on those tangents, the principal latus rectum
of the conic section (by cor. 1. prop. 16.) will be
to the principal latus rectum of that orbit, in a ratio
compounded of the duplicate ratio of the perpendiculars
and the duplicate ratio of the velocities; and is
therefore given. Let this latus rectum be *L*. The focus
*S* of the conic section is also given. Let the angle *RPH*
be the complement of the angle *RPS* to two right;
and the line *PH*, in which the other focus *H* is
placed, is given by position. Let fill *SK* perpendicular
on *PH*, and erect the conjugate semi-axe *BC*; this
done, we shall have = = = = . Add on both sides , and we shall have = , or to *PH* as 2*SP* + 2*KP* to *L*. Whence *PH* is given both in length and velocity. That is, if the velocity
of the body in *P* is such that the latus rectum *L* is less
than 2*SP* + 2*KP*, *PH* will lie on the same side of
the tangent *PR* with the line *SP*; and therefore the
figure will be an ellipsis, which from the given foci
*S*, *H* and the principal axe *SP* + *PH*, is given also.
But if the velocity of the body is so great, that the
latus rectum *L* becomes equal to 2*PS* + 2 *KP*, the
length *PH* will be infinite; and therefore the figure
will be a parabola, which has its axe *SH* parallel to the line *PK*, and is thence given. But if the body
goes from its place *P* with a yet greater velocity, the
length *PH* is to be taken on the other side the tangent;
and so the tangent passing between the foci, the
figure will be an hyperbola having its principal axe
equal to the difference of the lines *SP* and *PH*, and
thence is given. For if the body, in these cases, revolves
in a conic section so found, it is demonstrated
in prop. 11, 12, and 13, that the centripetal force
will be reciprocally as the square of the distance of the
body from the centre of force *S*; and therefore we
have rightly determined the line *PQ*, which a body
let go from a given place *P* with a given velocity,
and in the direction of the right line *PR* given by
position, would describe with such a force. *Q. E. F.*

Cor. 1. Hence in every conic section, from the
principal vertex *D*, the latus rectum *L*, and the focus
*S* given, the other focus *H* is given. by taking *DH*
to *DS* as the latus rectum to the difference between the
latus rectum and 4*DS*. For the proportion, *SP' + *PH
to *PH* as 2*PS* + 2*KP* to *L*, becomes, in
the case of this corollary, *DS* + *DH* to *DH* as 4*DS*
to L, and by division *DS* to *DH* as 4*DS* - *L*
to *L*.

Cor. 2. Whence if the velocity of a body in the
principal vertex *D* is given, the orbit may be readily
found; to wit, by taking its latus rectum to twice
the distance *DS*, in the duplicate ratio of this given
velocity to the velocity of a body revolving in a
circle at the distance *DS* (by cor. 3. prop. 16.) and
then taking *DH* to *DS* as the latus rectum to the difference
between the latus rectum and 4*DS*.

Cor. 3. Hence also if a body move in any conic section, and is forced out of its orbit by an impulse; you may discover the orbit in which it will afterwards pursue its course. For by compounding the proper motion of the body with that motion, which the impulse alone would rate, you'll have the motion with which the body will go off from a given place of impulse, in the direction of a right line given in position.

Cor. 4. And if that body is continually disturbed by the action of same foreign force, we may nearly know its course, by collecting the changes which that force introduces in some points, and elminating the continual changes it will undergo in the intermediate places, from the analogy that appears in the progress of the series.

Scholium.

If a body P (Pl. 6. *Fig.* 4.) by means of a centripetal
force tending to any given point *R* move in the
perimeter of any given conic section, whose centre is
*C*; and the law of the centripetal force is required:
Draw *C G* parallel to the radius *RP*, and meeting the
tangent *PG* of the orbit in *G*; and the force required
(by cor. 1. & schol. prop, 10. & cor. 3. prop. 7.)
will be as .