Prove earth is round

1. Aug 13, 2008

chewy11577

1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data
Can you prove the earth is round by mathematical equation?

2. Relevant equations

3. The attempt at a solution

2. Aug 13, 2008

cristo

Staff Emeritus
Is this really a homework question? If so, you should fill in sections 2 and 3 of the homework posting template.

3. Aug 13, 2008

Dick

Obviously not. The earth being flat is not inconsistent with mathematics. You have to make a physical observation.

4. Aug 14, 2008

Feldoh

Define "round" it's sort of ambiguous

5. Aug 14, 2008

Defennder

Spherical?

6. Aug 14, 2008

Gear300

The Earth is actually closer to an oblate spheroid (if I have it right)...yes, this can be shown mathematically.

7. Aug 14, 2008

stewartcs

Probably not since the earth is not round.

It has a buldge at the equator...too many donuts.

CS

8. Aug 14, 2008

black_squirrel

yea use the formula for the surface area of a sphere 4pi*r2. Then compare it to the actual surface area of the earth. you will see that the numbers do not match proving earth is flat :D

9. Aug 14, 2008

Alex6200

Put simply one could observe that it is possible to circumnavigate the globe, or leave the Earth in a spaceship without seeing the edge. It's not difficult.

And yes, you can't prove that the Earth is round through mathematics, you have to show an observation.