|MadSci Network: Physics|
I've ocassionally pondered this question and have not been able to intuit a solution. Take a sphere with a center point C and spin it a around its X-axis (i.e. the line XC). If you then somehow apply a spin around the (original) line YC, does the sphere have two axes of rotation or does it now have one axis of rotation which is some summation of the two spins? I'm not even sure that my question is well-formed, because I don't know if you could actually apply a spin to the resting line YC independent of the spin already given around XC. For example, if the sphere has attitude control jets on its sides like a spaceship, the Y jet would move through the YZ plane (afterstarting the X-spin) and not be able to impart a pure Y spin. To make this question even more complicated, the earth spins around it's single axis, but that axis itself precesses. Can this be thought of as two axes of rotation or are my definitions just broken? Thanks for any light you can shed on this puzzle.
Re: Can a sphere have more than one axis of rotation?
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