Motion of the earth and us

rock.freak667
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Main Question or Discussion Point

If the Earth spins at a very fast rate (tis like 300km/s or something like that I think) do Aeroplanes take this into account and by that do I mean if they move in the direction of the Earth's rotation to decrease the power required by the engines to produce the required speed.
 

Answers and Replies

pam
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Not to first order, because the atmosphere moves at about the same speed as the earth. The high altitude "jet stream" moves at ~100 mph from West to East, so that air travel is faster from West to East. The jet stream is probably related to the Coriolis force due to the Earth's rotation. Satellites are launched over the sea from Florida to take advantage of the ~800 mph velocity of the Earth.
 
russ_watters
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Or, no for the same reason you don't take it into account when throwing a ball.
 
rock.freak667
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So they don't because planes don't fly high enough to take advantage of the Earth's rotation?
 
russ_watters
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There is no such thing as flying high enough to take advantage of the earth's rotation. The atmosphere is basically attached to the earth, so you either fly in it or you fly out of it. If you fly in it, you don't take advantage of the earth's rotation, if you fly out of it (which isn't really flying anymore) you do.
 
berkeman
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But flying over the northern pole area of the globe (for Northern Hemisphere flights) does have an advantage for some flights, no?
 
454
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But flying over the northern pole area of the globe (for Northern Hemisphere flights) does have an advantage for some flights, no?
That's just because it it the shortest path. That has nothing to do with rotation.
 
Danger
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On the other hand, space launches do utilize the effect. That's why spaceports are located as close as possible to the equator.
 

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