The Flying to Pieces of a Whirling Ring


PROF. LODGE has invited me to follow up his letter on “The Flying to Pieces of a Whirling Ring” (NATURE, March 12, p. 439), by sending to NATURE a note about the strains and stresses in a whirling disk—a matter which has lately been the subject of some correspondence between us. Before speaking of the disk, however, let me (as an old cable hand) confess that I do not follow the reasoning which leads Prof. Lodge to say that a submerged cable of the average density of sea-water, if lying parallel to the equator, would be subject to a stress of 30 tons per square inch, or more (in latitude less than 60°), in consequence of the earth's rotation. This is in startling disagreement with one's recollection of the behaviour of say a “caya” rope (which satisfies the condition as to density). But surely a cable that is wholly supported by water is as much protected by gravity from flying to pieces as a cable that is partly supported by the mud or rocks of the bottom.

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EWING, J. The Flying to Pieces of a Whirling Ring. Nature 43, 462 (1891) doi:10.1038/043462a0

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