Spring Released During Circular Motion JS Model Documents

This material has 5 associated documents. Select a document title to view a document's information.

Main Document

Spring Released During Circular Motion JS Model 

written by Wolfgang Christian and Tom Dooling

This simulation shows different views of a spring that is whirled in a circle with one end free. The free end extends outward due to its own inertia or, expressed in terms of a rotating reference frame, the action of centrifugal force. Given sufficient time for initial oscillations to dampen, the free end travels in uniform circular motion. How will the two ends of the spring move when the free end is released?

Newtonian mechanics predicts that the free end will to continue in uniform circular motion as before, until such time as a wave propagates from the inner end to the outer. Seen in person or especially in high-speed video, the phenomenon is striking, even if expected.

Last Modified May 17, 2023

This file has previous versions.

Supplemental Documents (3)

The Motion Of A Spring Released From Uniform Circular Motion 

A detailed discussion of the Spring Release During Circular Motion simulation is available in The Motion Of A Spring Released From Uniform Circular Motion paper by T. Dooling, J. Register, M. Carnaghi, and A. Titus.

Last Modified May 17, 2023

This file is included in the full-text index.

Rotating Spring Analysis Video 

Video showing Tracker Analysis of a rotating spring as it is released.

Last Modified November 10, 2023

Rotating Spring Release Video 

Video of a spring released during circular motion.  Created by Jeff Register.

Last Modified November 10, 2023

This file has previous versions.

Source Code Documents

Rotating Spring Simulation Source Code 

The JavaScript EJS source code for this simulation.

Last Modified May 17, 2023