A Mathematician's Look at Foucault's Pendulum
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...what are the underlying forces at work behind this phenomenon? Are they mathematical or are they physical? Today, at least, I'd like to argue that they are mathematical. It is simply the curvature of the earth which enables the pendulum's tip to create its single pattern. The notion of curvature is an interesting and exciting topic that is rich in questions inviting exploration and research. While the definition of curvature of a curve may be familiar to many, curvature of a surface may not be. It makes sense to tackle a familiar problem from physics using a completely mathematical formulation.
Boersma, S. (2005). A Mathematician’s Look at Foucault’s Pendulum. Math Horizons, 12(3), 19–21, 32. https://doi.org/10.1080/10724117.2005.12021801
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