MadSci Network: Physics

Subject: Is 'centrifugal force' applicable without friction?

Date: Fri Jan 22 16:14:35 1999
Posted by Tom
Grade level: nonaligned
School: No school entered.
City: Squamish State/Province: British Columbia
Country: Canada
Area of science: Physics
ID: 917043275.Ph

In orbit around Earth is a large spinning cylinder. Centrifugal 
force will hold a person on the inside surface just like gravity 
would.  If the cylinder was filled with air, the spin of the 
cylinder would be transmitted, via friction, to the entire inside 
of the cylinder. Therefore, even when you were not touching the 
inside surface, you would feel 'gravity' pulling you 'down'. This 
effect would become less and less the closer to the axis you 
came. At the axis, you would be 'weightless'. My question is 
basically: Would the same effect occur in an airless situation... 
or would you be weightless throughout the entire cylinder until 
your body was given inertia by direct contact with the inner 

Re: Is 'centrifugal force' applicable without friction?

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