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14 August 2020 15:25

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Subject: Reason for Gyroscope's peculiar behaviour
Question: Dear Recipient, I have to prepare an assignment on Gyroscopes - the reason for peculiar behaviour, applications, types. Since many days I have been trying to understand Gyroscopes and I do know the basics but I'm still not convinced with the concept involved. Stated below are my doubts:
- If a stationary top is placed with its pointed end on a flat surface, it tilts due to unstable equilibrium. But when it's rotating it can easily balance itself on the pointed end. What exactly is the force that helps it maintain balance? Please explain mathematically with the help of Force diagrams.
- Why exactly does Precession occur ?(i.e. the motion about the third axis, when the gyroscope is displaced rotationally about the second axis, given that the gyroscope wheel is spinning about the first axis). Let me know if this is what Precession means. Is Precession desirable or not?
- Please also help me explain how Gyroscopes help to maintain a stable direction in space, and how is this made use of in various applications?
Date: 7 September 2009
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Answer: Paul Tatham - 17/09/2010 10:48:55
I don't think the space allowed for an answer is adequate for me to explain so please email me for more details. The answer to why precession occurs is that gravity is a positive force that only pulls electrons (that is the big error of physics. proof available). If you consider only the electrons orbiting in a roughly horizontal plane, those on one side of the disk are pulled in the same direction as gravity is pulling, whilst those on the opposite side are pulled against gravity. The effect of this is to change the velocity of the electrons on each side of the disk. (There are also mass changes that I will ignore here). When velocity changes, momentum changes, so there is higher momentum on one side of the disk than on the other. This means that the centre of rotation is no longer the centre of momentum, so the disk moves horizontally to try to achieve alignment = precession.

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Answer: Paul Tatham - 17/09/2010 10:50:07
I don't think the space allowed for an answer is adequate for me to explain so please email me for more details. The answer to why precession occurs is that gravity is a positive force that only pulls electrons (that is the big error of physics. proof available). If you consider only the electrons orbiting in a roughly horizontal plane, those on one side of the disk are pulled in the same direction as gravity is pulling, whilst those on the opposite side are pulled against gravity. The effect of this is to change the velocity of the electrons on each side of the disk. (There are also mass changes that I will ignore here). When velocity changes, momentum changes, so there is higher momentum on one side of the disk than on the other. This means that the centre of rotation is no longer the centre of momentum, so the disk moves horizontally to try to achieve alignment = precession.

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Answer: Paul Tatham - 17/09/2010 10:54:02
Addition to above, my email is
paultatham@ymail.com

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