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Physics/Surely something on Wikipedia can't be inaccurate..?


Noticed this bit:

" the operational definition, the weight of an object at rest on the surface of the Earth is lessened by the effect of the centrifugal force from the Earth's rotation."

Smells bad. I mean, what if the mass in question is at the south pole..? ;-)

Thanks for any insights/clarification! -JMM

The mass doesn't change but weight = mg and g varies over the surface of the Earth not just because of a very slight correction for centrifugal force but more for the variation for the height of the object relative to the center of the Earth, since g is inversely proportional to that distance.  You would weight 0.05% less at Denver than New York City.  


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Richard J. Raridon


I can answer most questions in undergraduate physics courses, including electricity and magnetism, atomic and nuclear, mechanics and optics.


I have taught undergraduate physics courses

Sigma Xi, AAAS, SE section of APS

BA in math, MA in physics, PhD in physical chemistry

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