Fr.: vitesse d'échapement
The speed an object must attain in order to free itself from the gravitational influence of an astronomical body. It is the minimum velocity for the object to enter a parabolic trajectory. The escape velocity is given by: Ve = (2GM/r)1/2, where G is the → gravitational constant, M is the mass of the astronomical body, and r is its radius. The escape velocity of the Earth is about 11.2 km s-1, that of the Moon is 2.4 km s-1, and that of the Sun about 618 km s-1.