[Offtopic] 'Water down the plughole' international experiment

victor rajewski askvictor at gmail.com
Tue Aug 19 10:01:46 EST 2008

On Tue, Aug 19, 2008 at 12:23 AM, Royce Williams
<Royce.Williams at billanook.vic.edu.au> wrote:
> I am sure that this has been tested to death already and is an urban
> myth

And your source for this is?

It may well be, but there is an element of truth in it.
Cyclones/hurricanes/storm systems tend to spin one direction in the
northern hemisphere, the other direction in the southern. The Coriolis
effect can also be seen in Foucault's pendulum experiment. It is
_probably_ not a significant enough force to noticably effect water
down the drain, but there's one way to find out - that's what the
scientific method is, and together with a simpsons reference, this
would be a great lesson on it for the students. For that matter,
although the force might be very small, it might be significant over a
large number of trials, presenting itself via a statistical analysis
rather than appearing in every trial. Maybe that's what this
experiment is trying to find. And if it isn't, then it should be :)


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