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The Flying Circus of Physics is a book about curious events and effects of the everyday world. This site is an extension of the book.

Spotlight story for this month: Click on the title down below here
Secondary stories for this month: Click on "News/Updates" in menu at the left
Archived stories and links (hundreds): 1A, 1B, 1C, 1D, 1E, 1F1G, 2A, 2B, 2C, 2D, 2E, 3, 4, 5, 6, and 7
Index to this site and the book, not only individual terms but also collections, such as "Pub physics" and "Accidents" and "Stunts": A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, I, J-K, L, M-OP-QR, S, T-Z

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Jay Waller stories: Physics for
Citations (over 11,000) and links (over 2000) for items in the book (pdf files):
       Chap 1, Chap 2, Chap 3, Chap 4, Chap 5, Chap 6, Chap 7
A random sample from the book appears at lower right each time you come to this site.

----  Jearl Walker
ps. If the biplane at the top of the page doesn't have sound and motion, download the free flash player from Adobe.com.

Flying Circus of Physics SpotlightFlying Circus of Physics Spotlight

Pouring water in an airplane during a barrel roll
Sunday, March 01, 2015

Here is an image of water being poured in an upside down jet. The water stream curves away from the ground, as if an anti-gravity force has been turned on. What causes the stream to behave that way? It is not centrifugal force because, with the water in free fall, the only force acting on the water is gravity.  

Flying Circus of Physics SampleFlying Circus of Physics Sample

Run or walk in the rain?

Should you run or walk when crossing a street in the rain without an umbrella (Fig. 1-1)? Running certainly means that you spend less time in the rain, but it also means that you may be intercepting more of the raindrops. Does the answer change if a wind blows the drops either toward or away from you? MORE

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