Department of Energy Argonne National Laboratory Office of Science NEWTON's Homepage NEWTON's Homepage
NEWTON, Ask A Scientist!
NEWTON Home Page NEWTON Teachers Visit Our Archives Ask A Question How To Ask A Question Question of the Week Our Expert Scientists Volunteer at NEWTON! Frequently Asked Questions Referencing NEWTON About NEWTON About Ask A Scientist Education At Argonne Earth rotation
Name: Mark
Status: Other
Age: N/A
Location: N/A
Country: N/A
Date: N/A 


Question:
Why does the Earth spin? What makes it spin?



Replies:
Earth spins because (presumably) the cloud from which it condensed had some rotation. As it condensed, it spun up because something called the angular momentum is conserved. If you pour some water in to a sink, you would have noticed that it spins up as it approaches the outlet, this is another example of spinning up. If a body is spinning then it must keep on doing so forever, unless some force acts on it. That is why the Earth keeps on spinning - you do not need a force to keep it going.

Jasjeet S Bagla


Click here to return to the Astronomy Archives

NEWTON is an electronic community for Science, Math, and Computer Science K-12 Educators, sponsored and operated by Argonne National Laboratory's Educational Programs, Andrew Skipor, Ph.D., Head of Educational Programs.

For assistance with NEWTON contact a System Operator (help@newton.dep.anl.gov), or at Argonne's Educational Programs

NEWTON AND ASK A SCIENTIST
Educational Programs
Building 360
9700 S. Cass Ave.
Argonne, Illinois
60439-4845, USA
Update: June 2012
Weclome To Newton

Argonne National Laboratory