<< Chapter < Page Chapter >> Page >

What we have here is, in fact, another conservation law. If the net torque is zero , then angular momentum is constant or conserved . We can see this rigorously by considering net τ = Δ L Δ t size 12{"net "τ= { {ΔL} over {Δt} } } {} for the situation in which the net torque is zero. In that case,

net τ = 0 size 12{"net "τ=0} {}

implying that

Δ L Δ t = 0 . size 12{ { {ΔL} over {Δt} } =0} {}

If the change in angular momentum Δ L size 12{ΔL} {} is zero, then the angular momentum is constant; thus,

L = constant net τ = 0 size 12{L="constant " left ("net "τ=0 right )} {}


L = L net τ = 0 . size 12{L=L'" " left ("net "τ=0 right )} {}

These expressions are the law of conservation of angular momentum    . Conservation laws are as scarce as they are important.

An example of conservation of angular momentum is seen in [link] , in which an ice skater is executing a spin. The net torque on her is very close to zero, because there is relatively little friction between her skates and the ice and because the friction is exerted very close to the pivot point. (Both F size 12{F} {} and r size 12{r} {} are small, and so τ size 12{τ} {} is negligibly small.) Consequently, she can spin for quite some time. She can do something else, too. She can increase her rate of spin by pulling her arms and legs in. Why does pulling her arms and legs in increase her rate of spin? The answer is that her angular momentum is constant, so that

L = L . size 12{L=L'} {}

Expressing this equation in terms of the moment of inertia,

= I ω , size 12{Iω=I'ω'} {}

where the primed quantities refer to conditions after she has pulled in her arms and reduced her moment of inertia. Because I size 12{I'} {} is smaller, the angular velocity ω size 12{ω'} {} must increase to keep the angular momentum constant. The change can be dramatic, as the following example shows.

The image a shows an ice skater spinning on the tip of her skate with both her arms and one leg extended. The image b shows the ice skater spinning on the tip of one skate, with her arms crossed and one leg supported on another.
(a) An ice skater is spinning on the tip of her skate with her arms extended. Her angular momentum is conserved because the net torque on her is negligibly small. In the next image, her rate of spin increases greatly when she pulls in her arms, decreasing her moment of inertia. The work she does to pull in her arms results in an increase in rotational kinetic energy.

Calculating the angular momentum of a spinning skater

Suppose an ice skater, such as the one in [link] , is spinning at 0.800 rev/ s with her arms extended. She has a moment of inertia of 2 . 34 kg m 2 size 12{2 "." "34"`"kg" cdot m rSup { size 8{2} } } {} with her arms extended and of 0 . 363 kg m 2 size 12{0 "." "363"`"kg" cdot m rSup { size 8{2} } } {} with her arms close to her body. (These moments of inertia are based on reasonable assumptions about a 60.0-kg skater.) (a) What is her angular velocity in revolutions per second after she pulls in her arms? (b) What is her rotational kinetic energy before and after she does this?


In the first part of the problem, we are looking for the skater’s angular velocity ω size 12{ { {ω}} sup { ' }} {} after she has pulled in her arms. To find this quantity, we use the conservation of angular momentum and note that the moments of inertia and initial angular velocity are given. To find the initial and final kinetic energies, we use the definition of rotational kinetic energy given by

KE rot = 1 2 2 . size 12{"KE" rSub { size 8{"rot"} } = { {1} over {2} } Iω rSup { size 8{2} } } {}

Solution for (a)

Because torque is negligible (as discussed above), the conservation of angular momentum given in = I ω size 12{Iω= { {I}} sup { ' } { {ω}} sup { ' }} {} is applicable. Thus,

L = L size 12{L=L'} {}


= I ω size 12{Iω=I'ω'} {}

Solving for ω and substituting known values into the resulting equation gives

ω = I I ω = 2.34 kg m 2 0 .363 kg m 2 0.800 rev/s = 5.16 rev/s.

Questions & Answers

show that the set of all natural number form semi group under the composition of addition
Nikhil Reply
what is the meaning
explain and give four Example hyperbolic function
Lukman Reply
⅗ ⅔½
The denominator of a certain fraction is 9 more than the numerator. If 6 is added to both terms of the fraction, the value of the fraction becomes 2/3. Find the original fraction. 2. The sum of the least and greatest of 3 consecutive integers is 60. What are the valu
1. x + 6 2 -------------- = _ x + 9 + 6 3 x + 6 3 ----------- x -- (cross multiply) x + 15 2 3(x + 6) = 2(x + 15) 3x + 18 = 2x + 30 (-2x from both) x + 18 = 30 (-18 from both) x = 12 Test: 12 + 6 18 2 -------------- = --- = --- 12 + 9 + 6 27 3
2. (x) + (x + 2) = 60 2x + 2 = 60 2x = 58 x = 29 29, 30, & 31
on number 2 question How did you got 2x +2
combine like terms. x + x + 2 is same as 2x + 2
Q2 x+(x+2)+(x+4)=60 3x+6=60 3x+6-6=60-6 3x=54 3x/3=54/3 x=18 :. The numbers are 18,20 and 22
Mark and Don are planning to sell each of their marble collections at a garage sale. If Don has 1 more than 3 times the number of marbles Mark has, how many does each boy have to sell if the total number of marbles is 113?
mariel Reply
Mark = x,. Don = 3x + 1 x + 3x + 1 = 113 4x = 112, x = 28 Mark = 28, Don = 85, 28 + 85 = 113
how do I set up the problem?
Harshika Reply
what is a solution set?
find the subring of gaussian integers?
hello, I am happy to help!
Shirley Reply
please can go further on polynomials quadratic
hi mam
I need quadratic equation link to Alpa Beta
Abdullahi Reply
find the value of 2x=32
Felix Reply
divide by 2 on each side of the equal sign to solve for x
Want to review on complex number 1.What are complex number 2.How to solve complex number problems.
yes i wantt to review
use the y -intercept and slope to sketch the graph of the equation y=6x
Only Reply
how do we prove the quadratic formular
Seidu Reply
please help me prove quadratic formula
hello, if you have a question about Algebra 2. I may be able to help. I am an Algebra 2 Teacher
Shirley Reply
thank you help me with how to prove the quadratic equation
may God blessed u for that. Please I want u to help me in sets.
what is math number
Tric Reply
x-2y+3z=-3 2x-y+z=7 -x+3y-z=6
Sidiki Reply
can you teacch how to solve that🙏
Solve for the first variable in one of the equations, then substitute the result into the other equation. Point For: (6111,4111,−411)(6111,4111,-411) Equation Form: x=6111,y=4111,z=−411x=6111,y=4111,z=-411
x=61/11 y=41/11 z=−4/11 x=61/11 y=41/11 z=-4/11
Need help solving this problem (2/7)^-2
Simone Reply
what is the coefficient of -4×
Mehri Reply
A soccer field is a rectangle 130 meters wide and 110 meters long. The coach asks players to run from one corner to the other corner diagonally across. What is that distance, to the nearest tenths place.
Kimberly Reply
Jeannette has $5 and $10 bills in her wallet. The number of fives is three more than six times the number of tens. Let t represent the number of tens. Write an expression for the number of fives.
August Reply
What is the expressiin for seven less than four times the number of nickels
Leonardo Reply
How do i figure this problem out.
how do you translate this in Algebraic Expressions
linda Reply
why surface tension is zero at critical temperature
I think if critical temperature denote high temperature then a liquid stats boils that time the water stats to evaporate so some moles of h2o to up and due to high temp the bonding break they have low density so it can be a reason
Need to simplify the expresin. 3/7 (x+y)-1/7 (x-1)=
Crystal Reply
. After 3 months on a diet, Lisa had lost 12% of her original weight. She lost 21 pounds. What was Lisa's original weight?
Chris Reply
how did you get the value of 2000N.What calculations are needed to arrive at it
Smarajit Reply
Privacy Information Security Software Version 1.1a
Got questions? Join the online conversation and get instant answers!
Jobilize.com Reply
Practice Key Terms 2

Get Jobilize Job Search Mobile App in your pocket Now!

Get it on Google Play Download on the App Store Now

Source:  OpenStax, Unit 8 - rotational motion. OpenStax CNX. Feb 22, 2016 Download for free at https://legacy.cnx.org/content/col11970/1.1
Google Play and the Google Play logo are trademarks of Google Inc.

Notification Switch

Would you like to follow the 'Unit 8 - rotational motion' conversation and receive update notifications?