1. Limited time only! Sign up for a free 30min personal tutor trial with Chegg Tutors
    Dismiss Notice
Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Air and Earth's rotation

  1. Jan 6, 2009 #1
    We all know that at the equator the Earth's rotates at over 1000 mph.
    My question is why don't we feel the air of the atmosphere "crashing" with us.
    What holds the air so that it keeps moving with us?
  2. jcsd
  3. Jan 6, 2009 #2


    User Avatar

    Staff: Mentor

    Two ways to look at it:

    1. Friction. If the wind were blowing at 1000 mph, there'd be a lot of drag slowing it down.
    2. What would cause the air to start to move that fast?
  4. Jan 7, 2009 #3


    User Avatar
    Gold Member

    Gravity. Conservation of angular momentum. Etc..
    The atmosphere has been rotating with the planet since it formed. There are variations, of course, which result in weather, but 'still air' is moving at the same speed as the planetary surface.
Know someone interested in this topic? Share this thread via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook

Similar Discussions: Air and Earth's rotation
  1. Hot air Rotation (Replies: 2)

  2. Rotation of the earth (Replies: 13)

  3. Earth rotation (Replies: 7)

  4. Earth rotation (Replies: 4)

  5. Air moving with Earth (Replies: 12)