# Analyzing Forces in the Rotor Ride at the State Fair

In summary, the Rotor Ride at the NM State Fair involves passengers suspended on the wall of a rotating drum, held in place by friction. The friction coefficient for the drum wall/clothing contact surface is 0.3. To determine if this is enough to keep the passengers from sliding, one must consider the normal force exerted by the wall and use equations for rotational motion, friction, and gravity.

## Homework Statement

In the Rotor Ride at the NM State Fair, passengers stand with their
backs to the wall in a giant rotating drum with a radius of 10 feet. The drum
is brought up to a speed of 33 1/3 RPM, and then the floor is lowered, leaving
the passengers suspended above a giant hole in the floor, stuck to the wall by
friction. The friction coefficient for the drum wall/clothing contact surface is
typically s ' 0:3: Is this high enough to keep the passengers from sliding? How
much can the angular speed be lowered before the passengers slide down into
the hole?

## The Attempt at a Solution

I don't see how we are supposed include the friction coefficient if there isn't a place for it in the equation. Perhaps I am not using the correct formula?

## Homework Statement

In the Rotor Ride at the NM State Fair, passengers stand with their
backs to the wall in a giant rotating drum with a radius of 10 feet. The drum
is brought up to a speed of 33 1/3 RPM, and then the floor is lowered, leaving
the passengers suspended above a giant hole in the floor, stuck to the wall by
friction. The friction coefficient for the drum wall/clothing contact surface is
typically s ' 0:3: Is this high enough to keep the passengers from sliding? How
much can the angular speed be lowered before the passengers slide down into
the hole?

## The Attempt at a Solution

I don't see how we are supposed include the friction coefficient if there isn't a place for it in the equation. Perhaps I am not using the correct formula?

Physics courses are not about simply plugging numbers into given equations. Rather, they are about logically thinking things through starting with a given set of principles (in this case, those principles are Newton's laws of motion, and static friction) and moving up from there.

Anyway for this problem, you may wish to first start here: Consider a passenger with mass m on this ride. What is the normal force exerted by the drum's wall on this passenger?

## Homework Statement

In the Rotor Ride at the NM State Fair, passengers stand with their
backs to the wall in a giant rotating drum with a radius of 10 feet. The drum
is brought up to a speed of 33 1/3 RPM, and then the floor is lowered, leaving
the passengers suspended above a giant hole in the floor, stuck to the wall by
friction. The friction coefficient for the drum wall/clothing contact surface is
typically s ' 0:3: Is this high enough to keep the passengers from sliding? How
much can the angular speed be lowered before the passengers slide down into
the hole?

## The Attempt at a Solution

I don't see how we are supposed include the friction coefficient if there isn't a place for it in the equation. Perhaps I am not using the correct formula?

You're not considering enough equations.

There's more than one physics effect taking place here. Since the problem involves friction, what equation(s) do you know that pertain to it?

Suggestion: When you are given a problem to solve, take a moment to evaluate the physics concepts that are implied then gather together your crib sheet of relevant equations. Here you've got rotational motion, friction, and gravity acting. You might need to draw a Free Body Diagram of the forces acting on a person subjected to the "Rotor".

## 1. What is the "Rotor Ride" at the State Fair?

The Rotor Ride is an amusement park ride that simulates the experience of a spinning centrifuge. Riders stand against the walls of a large cylinder, which then begins to spin. As the speed increases, riders are pressed against the walls by centrifugal force.

## 2. Is the Rotor Ride safe?

Yes, the Rotor Ride is designed and operated with safety as the top priority. The ride is regularly inspected and maintained to ensure it meets all safety standards. Riders are also secured with shoulder harnesses and can request to stop the ride at any time.

## 3. How fast does the Rotor Ride spin?

The Rotor Ride can reach speeds of up to 24 miles per hour, depending on the size and weight of the riders. This speed creates a centrifugal force of 3 Gs, which is similar to the force experienced by astronauts during launch.

## 4. What is the minimum age/height requirement for the Rotor Ride?

The minimum age and height requirement for the Rotor Ride may vary depending on the state fair. However, most fairs require riders to be at least 10 years old and 48 inches tall to ride alone. Children under the age of 10 must be accompanied by an adult.

## 5. How long does the Rotor Ride last?

The Rotor Ride typically lasts around 2-3 minutes. However, this may vary depending on the speed and duration of the ride cycle chosen by the operator. Riders are free to stay on the ride for multiple cycles if they wish.

• Introductory Physics Homework Help
Replies
2
Views
2K
• Introductory Physics Homework Help
Replies
6
Views
9K
• Introductory Physics Homework Help
Replies
4
Views
4K
• Introductory Physics Homework Help
Replies
3
Views
2K
• Introductory Physics Homework Help
Replies
7
Views
3K
• Introductory Physics Homework Help
Replies
4
Views
4K
• Introductory Physics Homework Help
Replies
1
Views
2K
• Introductory Physics Homework Help
Replies
2
Views
5K
• Introductory Physics Homework Help
Replies
4
Views
2K
• Introductory Physics Homework Help
Replies
9
Views
4K