1. This computer visualization activity is designed to help students understand how the effective potential for central force orbits depends on various physical parameters.
  2. Students use a Maple Worksheet or Mathematica Notebook to explore the parameter space for the effective potential, relating the motion of the orbit with plots of effective potential, examining the effective potential for both attractive and repulsive systems.
  3. The whole class wrap-up discussion summarizes how various physical parameters can affect the shape of an orbit.

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