Centrifugal acceleration - radians^2?

  • #1

Homework Statement



I'm working a problem concerning centrifugal acceleration and I've stumbled on something I don't quite understand:





Homework Equations



F=mrω2 where ω=rad/s

So the resulting units: kg * m*rad2/s2


The Attempt at a Solution



I would expect acceleration to be in unit ms-2


What's up with these radians? What do they mean?

Homework Statement





Homework Equations





The Attempt at a Solution

 

Answers and Replies

  • #2
998
15
Note that there is 'linear acceleration' (i.e. rate of change of linear volocity) in m/s^2
and 'angular acceleration' (i.e. rate of change of angular velocity) in mrad/s^2 but of course radian is not an S.I. unit.
 
Last edited:
  • #3
Doc Al
Mentor
45,379
1,758
The radian is a dimensionless quantity. It's a unit of angle (really a ratio) that has no dimension, so the final units of acceleration will be m/s2 as expected. (See: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Radian#Dimensional_analysis)
 
  • #4
998
15
'radian' is a measure for an angle.
For example pi radians is equivalent to 180 degrees.
 
  • #5

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