Travels with my ant: the curtate and prolate cycloids
Earlier in this section, we looked at the parametric equations for a cycloid, which is the path a point on the edge of a wheel traces as the wheel rolls along a straight path. In this project we look at two different variations of the cycloid, called the curtate and prolate cycloids.
First, let’s revisit the derivation of the parametric equations for a cycloid. Recall that we considered a tenacious ant trying to get home by hanging onto the edge of a bicycle tire. We have assumed the ant climbed onto the tire at the very edge, where the tire touches the ground. As the wheel rolls, the ant moves with the edge of the tire (
[link] ).
As we have discussed, we have a lot of flexibility when parameterizing a curve. In this case we let our parameter
t represent the angle the tire has rotated through. Looking at
[link] , we see that after the tire has rotated through an angle of
t , the position of the center of the wheel,
$C=\left({x}_{C},{y}_{C}\right),$ is given by
Note that these are the same parametric representations we had before, but we have now assigned a physical meaning to the parametric variable
t .
After a while the ant is getting dizzy from going round and round on the edge of the tire. So he climbs up one of the spokes toward the center of the wheel. By climbing toward the center of the wheel, the ant has changed his path of motion. The new path has less up-and-down motion and is called a
curtate cycloid (
[link] ). As shown in the figure, we let
b denote the distance along the spoke from the center of the wheel to the ant. As before, we let
t represent the angle the tire has rotated through. Additionally, we let
$C=\left({x}_{C},{y}_{C}\right)$ represent the position of the center of the wheel and
$A=\left({x}_{A},{y}_{A}\right)$ represent the position of the ant.
What is the position of the center of the wheel after the tire has rotated through an angle of
t ?
Use geometry to find expressions for
${x}_{C}-{x}_{A}$ and for
${y}_{C}-{y}_{A}.$
On the basis of your answers to parts 1 and 2, what are the parametric equations representing the curtate cycloid?
Once the ant’s head clears, he realizes that the bicyclist has made a turn, and is now traveling away from his home. So he drops off the bicycle tire and looks around. Fortunately, there is a set of train tracks nearby, headed back in the right direction. So the ant heads over to the train tracks to wait. After a while, a train goes by, heading in the right direction, and he manages to jump up and just catch the edge of the train wheel (without getting squished!).
The ant is still worried about getting dizzy, but the train wheel is slippery and has no spokes to climb, so he decides to just hang on to the edge of the wheel and hope for the best. Now, train wheels have a flange to keep the wheel running on the tracks. So, in this case, since the ant is hanging on to the very edge of the flange, the distance from the center of the wheel to the ant is actually greater than the radius of the wheel (
[link] ).
The setup here is essentially the same as when the ant climbed up the spoke on the bicycle wheel. We let
b denote the distance from the center of the wheel to the ant, and we let
t represent the angle the tire has rotated through. Additionally, we let
$C=\left({x}_{C},{y}_{C}\right)$ represent the position of the center of the wheel and
$A=\left({x}_{A},{y}_{A}\right)$ represent the position of the ant (
[link] ).
When the distance from the center of the wheel to the ant is greater than the radius of the wheel, his path of motion is called a
prolate cycloid . A graph of a prolate cycloid is shown in the figure.
Using the same approach you used in parts 1– 3, find the parametric equations for the path of motion of the ant.
What do you notice about your answer to part 3 and your answer to part 4?
Notice that the ant is actually traveling backward at times (the “loops” in the graph), even though the train continues to move forward. He is probably going to be
really dizzy by the time he gets home!
Questions & Answers
Is there any normative that regulates the use of silver nanoparticles?
fullerene is a bucky ball aka Carbon 60 molecule. It was name by the architect Fuller. He design the geodesic dome. it resembles a soccer ball.
Tarell
what is the actual application of fullerenes nowadays?
Damian
That is a great question Damian. best way to answer that question is to Google it. there are hundreds of applications for buck minister fullerenes, from medical to aerospace. you can also find plenty of research papers that will give you great detail on the potential applications of fullerenes.
Tarell
what is the Synthesis, properties,and applications of carbon nano chemistry
Yeah, it is a pain to say the least. You basically have to heat the substarte up to around 1000 degrees celcius then pass phosphene gas over top of it, which is explosive and toxic by the way, under very low pressure.
Harper
Do you know which machine is used to that process?