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Please explain what an axis of inertia or principle axis of inertia is!

by AxiomOfChoice
Tags: axis of inertia, explain
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Jun26-09, 01:59 PM
P: 529
I have confronted these terms in a paper about molecular quantum mechanics, and they are completely unfamiliar to me. Can someone help?
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Jun26-09, 05:28 PM
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P: 26,148
Hi AxiomOfChoice!

Basically, a principal axis of a body is a direction along which the simple Iω and 1/2 Iω2 formulas work.

All axes of rotational symmetry are principal axes, but other axes (usually) aren't (which is why things wobble ) …

see the PF Library on moment of inertia for details
Jun30-09, 06:21 AM
P: 36
Sounds like parallel axis theorem and moment of inertia to me. Used to find the inertia of things that are not point particals.

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