any force responsible for maintaining an object on a curved path around a fixed center. In introductory coursework this is usually "uniform circular motion" and yields several simple and useful relations. Not to be confused with the centrifugal pseudo-force experienced in a accelerated referenced ...

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52
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8answers
16k views

Does centrifugal force exist?

Currently in my last year of high school, and I have always been told that centrifugal force does not exist by my physics teachers. Today my girlfriend in the year below asked me what centrifugal ...
40
votes
6answers
7k views

Pouring water in an aircraft while upside down?

What is the physics behind the following photo? Someone had told me that this is because the aircraft might be moving towards a lower altitude, but I am still not sure.
12
votes
3answers
2k views

Centrifugal force?

Everyone calls it a pseudo force and that it is not really present, even there are so many machines listed to advantage of centrifugal force ( centrifuge, washing washing drier),and also it has the ...
9
votes
4answers
6k views

What is the cause of centripetal/centrifugal force?

What is the cause of centripetal/centrifugal force? When an object of mass $m$ is moved in a circular orbit, it experiences a centrifugal force radially away from the center. What is the cause of this ...
9
votes
2answers
3k views

Relativistic centripetal force

The thought randomly occurred to me that a circular particle accelerator would have to exert a lot of force in order to maintain the curvature of the trajectory. Many accelerators move particles at ...
9
votes
3answers
354 views

Can an orbit be calculated using two points and transit time?

Working in only two dimensions and assuming that the central body is at the origin of the coordinate system, given two points in space and knowing the transit time between those points, as well as the ...
9
votes
4answers
1k views

Shape of rotating rope (lasso problem?)

Let's take a wire or a rope. I usually do this with a chain or my scarf. I fixate one end in my hand and apply rotation (by subtle movements of this endpoint like spinning a lasso). The rope gets ...
7
votes
10answers
715 views

Why is centrifugal 'force' perpendicular to line of inertia

I know that centrifugal is labeled a fictitious force only arising in a rotating reference frame, but I still struggle to understand the forces at play intuitively in tethered rotating bodies. I've ...
7
votes
4answers
1k views

Will the sea form a concave surface?

Without neglecting the fact that the earth is rotating, let us be in a ship (such that there is no relative motion between sea and ship) in a sea that surrounds the northern most or southern most ...
6
votes
8answers
3k views

Is there a huge difference between centrifugal and centripetal forces?

I am doing a video for 8th grade on the subject. I'm showing the experiment of swinging a bucket of water over your head. Is there a huge difference between centrifugal and centripetal forces? Would ...
6
votes
6answers
3k views

Turning an Airplane. What actually causes the circular motion in a banked (roll) turn?

Basically I'm wondering if this is correct. Which essentially says that you need a torque to get the nose of the craft to turn and that this is provided by the rear tail surfaces. After trying to ...
6
votes
2answers
410 views

Effect of water on wobble of rotating structure

If we have a structure that rotates to create artificial gravity, then if the mass isn't perfectly distributed along the circumference the CM will be offset from the geometric center so there will be ...
5
votes
3answers
145 views

Is the planet Mesklin as described in Hal Clement's Mission of Gravity correct?

The book Mission of Gravity describes a planet with a mass of 16 times Jupiter spinning at a rate of one revolution every 17.75 minutes. This causes it to stretch out into an oblate spheroid and has ...
5
votes
4answers
359 views

Is any energy required to deflect an asteroid, with force always perpendicular to its trajectory?

Let's assume there is an asteroid traveling on a straight line (far from any gravitational source), and we need to deflect it from its actual trajectory, so we build a rocket motor on the surface and ...
5
votes
0answers
95 views

Is there an equivalent of Rindler coordinates for an object in centripetal motion?

Rindler coordinates are a parametrization of (a subset of) Minkowski space that are "natural" for an object experiencing constant acceleration - more specifically, an object experiencing constant ...
4
votes
2answers
100 views

Intuitive explanation for why centripetal acceleration is $\frac{v^2}{r}$

There are several ways to write centripetal acceleration $$\frac{v^2}{r} = \omega^2 r = v \omega$$ Are there intuitive explanations for any of these three forms? For instance, I can sort of explain ...
4
votes
3answers
1k views

Centrifugal Force

When a body is in circular motion, realistically, it experiences only the centripetal force, created by gravitational pull, tension etc. , which gives it acceleration towards the centre. Now, assuming ...
4
votes
2answers
1k views

Why does friction play the role of centripetal force during the turning of a car?

What makes frictional force the centripetal force of a car turning along a curve? As friction is the opposing force and acts anti-parallel so there is no component of frictional force towards the ...
4
votes
4answers
2k views

Increasing mass' effect on the balance between centripetal force and centrifugal force

Okay, this is nothing more than a thought experiment which popped into my head while driving home from work today. Take the case of a single body orbiting another, larger body, as in a planet and a ...
4
votes
1answer
201 views

Pendulum in a Turning Airplane

My friend and I are having an argument over what happens with a pendulum hanging inside an airplane during a turn. Assuming that the airplane is making a standard 1 G coordinated turn, how does the ...
4
votes
0answers
959 views

Friction in circular motion [closed]

A circular horizontal table spins around its axis of rotation with a constant angular speed. It completes one revolution in 2 seconds. An object whose mass is $M = 0.8 \ \text{kg}$ is placed on the ...
3
votes
3answers
5k views

Proof of centripetal acceleration formula ($a_c = v^2/r$) for non-uniform circular motion

The formula for centripetal (radial) acceleration is well known, and there exist many proofs for it: $$||a_c|| = \frac{||v||^2}{r}$$ However, all the proofs I've seen rely on the fact that it is ...
3
votes
2answers
4k views

Friction as a Centripetal Force

When an object is moving in a circle, won't the frictional force oppose it's motion? And if the velocity is always tangential to the path, there is no component of it towards the center, so there is ...
3
votes
3answers
948 views

How you feel in outer space vs. orbit?

I understand that when someone is in low earth orbit, the "pull" of their inertia is equal to the pull of gravity. However, the force of gravity is still acting on them. However, if they are in outer ...
3
votes
6answers
1k views

Do centripetal and reactive centrifugal forces cancel each other out?

In order for a body to move with uniform velocity in a circular path, there must exist some force towards the centre of curvature of the circular path. This is centripetal force. By Newton's Third ...
3
votes
3answers
1k views

Physical Variables of Circular Motion

To me, the definitions of variables involved in circular motion are rather confusing (perhaps due to the lack of understanding on my part), hence the question. As I understand it, there are two ...
3
votes
3answers
3k views

What provides the centrifugal force for planets orbiting a star?

this is a question I had when I was a kid. I'm a bit ashamed because I think I am missing out on something very obvious since I have the same question despite almost being an engineer now! From ...
3
votes
4answers
7k views

Planet orbits: what's the difference between gravity and centripetal force?

My physics teacher says that centripetal force is caused by gravity. I'm not entirely sure how this works? How can force cause another in space (ie where there's nothing). My astronomy teacher says ...
3
votes
1answer
239 views

Why friction is not reliable for circular turns on horizontal road with high speed and sharp curve?

Why is friction not reliable for circular turn on horizontal road for centripetal force when high speed and sharp curve are involved? So banking of road has to be present to introduce a new force $N ...
3
votes
1answer
264 views

How to explain centripetal force in terms or relativity

At the end of a video of dropping a ball and feathers in a vacuum, Brian Cox explains that the Ball and Feathers, as understood in terms of General Relativity, aren't falling. (apologies I can only ...
3
votes
2answers
301 views

Centripetal force in frame of reference of body moving In a circle

Suppose a body is moving in a circle about a fixed point. In the frame of reference of the body, is the centripetal force felt or is only the centrifugal force felt? More generally, does a body only ...
3
votes
3answers
782 views

Is the Moon freely falling towards the Earth?

The Moon is revolving around the Earth and its centripetal acceleration is towards the Earth. Does it mean that the Moon is freely falling towards Earth? What is the cause of the Moon orbiting around ...
3
votes
3answers
1k views

Conical vs Simple Pendulum

I don't understand why the Tension $T$ on a conical pendulum and a simple pendulum are different. In a simple pendulum, one would say that the tension of the rope is $T=mg \cos(\theta)$. However, ...
3
votes
3answers
3k views

The force arrow for centripetal force points in the opposite direction of my calculation?

I need someone to clarify a conceptual problem I can't seem to surpass. Image there is a rollercoaster loop and a rollerbcoaster car enters the loop at high speed. Once the car completes the full ...
3
votes
2answers
901 views

Car on a frictionless banked curve

A car is on a banked curve, following a path which is part of a circle with radius $R$. The curve is banked at angle $\theta$ with the horizontal, and is a frictionless surface. What is the speed ...
2
votes
6answers
743 views

Centripetal Force Acceleration

In uniform circular motion, acceleration is $\frac{v^2}{r}$ and time which it acts $\rightarrow 0$. So $\Delta v = 0$, but then why/how does direction change, when the acceleration should be ...
2
votes
4answers
439 views

What causes a car's velocity to follow the front wheels' direction?

I'm trying to simulate a car with correct physics models. In this example we let the car have a constant speed, and there are no forces (friction and drag) to slow down the speed. Here's a video that ...
2
votes
3answers
2k views

Why did they add a Centripetal Force in the Free-Body Diagram?

problem ! solution ! Why do they have the centripetal force in there? I understand that the normal force is the centripetal force here, but why would they say "or $\frac{mv^2}{r}$"? I thought it ...
2
votes
1answer
178 views

What provides the centripetal force for a glider?

Whenever any object follows a circular path, there is always a centripetal force which is provided by something. However, in the case of a glider making a loop in air, what provides the centripetal ...
2
votes
2answers
403 views

Could two identical stars revolve around each other in a common orbit if we only account for Newtonian physics?

Both a parent star and its planet revolve around the center of mass of the system, the reason we see stellar wobble. But if we take this to be true, which it is, there can be a configuration in which ...
2
votes
4answers
206 views

Turning on a straight, unbanked, frictionless road

I was learning about circular motion when this question struck me: In real life situations we are able to take a turn along a circular arc with our bike because friction provides us the necessary ...
2
votes
1answer
776 views

When does centripetal force cause constant circular motion?

As far as I know, if an object has a speed $s$ and a force is applied to it which generates an acceleration of $s^2/r$, then the object will start moving in a circle of radius $r$. Also, as far as I ...
2
votes
1answer
475 views

Vortex Air Intake

Why is a vortex air intake in an engine cause the fuel to burn more efficiently within a vehicle. Why is this more efficient.
2
votes
4answers
876 views

why does what get pushed away when centripetal acceleration is towards the center

If centripetal acceleration is towards the center, then why - when you spin a bucket of water (a classic demonstration) - does the water not get pushed out but rather stays in the bucket without ...
2
votes
3answers
748 views

Throwing a ball in a rotating space station

I have lots of trouble understanding circicular motion, fictitious forces, and how to dermine if a reference frame is intertial. I have thought of the following the scenario which causes some ...
2
votes
1answer
95 views

Velocity of satellites greater than required velocity

We often find velocity required to keep a satellite in orbit by the formula $v=\sqrt{\frac{GM}{r}}$ where $v$ is perpendicular to the gravitational force. It is very intuitive that the object will go ...
2
votes
1answer
168 views

Gas pressure and centrifugal force

I think about a rotating torus (simplified tire) filled with ideal gas. Mass of gas is $m$ and molar mass is $M$. Pressure in non rotating torus is $p_0$. Temperature is constant $T$. Inner radius of ...
2
votes
1answer
936 views

How is circular motion possible on a banked road when there is no Friction?

It is given here that the maximum safe speed of a vehicle on a banked road having coefficient of friction $0$, is $V =\sqrt{R g \tan \theta}$, where $\theta$ is the angle of banking. I can't ...
2
votes
1answer
115 views

Drag versus centripetal force

I'm trying to see how extensive a gaming engine's physics are. Consider a spinning disc with a box on it which is free to spin around a vertical pole connecting it to the disc. The pole is more ...
2
votes
1answer
80 views

Help understanding centre of mass

So basically the question I posed myself a few days ago was for a torus shaped planet, what would the gravitational field be like inside the torus? After viewing some answers on the internet, (Gravity ...