Image credit: Edward Lee; larger image
HyperPhysics: Coriolis Force
You can create an image like this by dripping paint onto a rapidly spinning turntable.
- The outward movement of the paint illustrates the centrifugal force.
- The slight curvature of the outward-moving lines illustrates the Coriolis force (the turntable was spinning clockwise).
- Learn about the Coriolis and centrifugal forces at HyperPhysics: Coriolis Force.
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Try experiencing the Coriolis effect next time you ride on a merry-go-round, just like in this video from the University of Illinois at Champagne-Urbana.
If you don't have a merry-go-round nearby, you can still see the Coriolis effect through this simulation.
Read more about the video and also about humans in rotating systems at Spinning Brains, an article from NASA.
(This feature was updated on August 14, 2013.)