Spinning Bicycle Wheel on Chair

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In a favorite laboratory experiment, a student, seated on a swivel chair with his or her feet off the floor, holds a horizontally spinning bicycle wheel at the opposite ends of its axis. Due to the conservation of angular momentum, as the student twists the wheel to reverse the direction of horizontal rotation, the chair begins to spin in the opposite direction.

Contributed by: Enrique Zeleny (November 2011)
Open content licensed under CC BY-NC-SA




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