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Centrifugal force facts for kids

Kids Encyclopedia Facts

This is the force that acts on the body in a direction away from the centre, which contributes to making the body try to fly away. When you hold a rope with a heavy object attached to it, and rotate it around, the rope becomes tight and keeps the body from flying away. This is caused by centripetal force.

In physics, centrifugal force (from Latin centrum "center" and fugere "to flee") is a fictitious force that appears when describing physics in a rotating reference frame; it acts on anything with mass considered in such a frame. Centrifugal force is fictitious because although it may feel to a person like a certain force is being exerted on them, someone outside the scene will see something different.

Example: If John is in a car that takes a sharp right turn, he will feel as though he is being pushed to his left. This is an imaginary force, called a centrifugal force, or a "running away from the center" force. John feels it because he is inside the car and is affected by it. However, if John's friend, Andy, is on the side of the road facing the front of John's car and watches John's car take a sharp right turn, Andy will see the car push John to the right with the car as it changes direction. This is a real force called centripetal force (or an "aiming towards the center" force) and acts towards the center of the circle of rotation.

F = m a  =m \frac{v^2}{r}

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See also

Kids robot.svg In Spanish: Fuerza centrífuga para niños

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