[asa] Physics poser

From: Jim Armstrong <jarmstro@qwest.net>
Date: Wed Sep 17 2008 - 22:33:21 EDT

Well, here's my favorite physics question:

Imagine your car at rest at a stop light. A helium filled balloon lolls
freely at rest at the center of the car's ceiling.
Now imagine that the light turns green and you accelerate through the
You notice that the balloon moves quite purposefully as you accelerate.
Question: which direction did the balloon move, and why?
Followup: set the experiment up for real and see what happens. Any
surprises? Any explanation "adjustments" required?

If you get it right, you'll have to settle for the satisfaction, I'm afraid!

JimA [Friend of ASA]

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Received on Wed Sep 17 22:34:18 2008

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