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Spinning top

  1. Jan 17, 2012 #1
    Everyone has seen a spinning top in action, and maybe some of you have also seen how they're able to stabilize completely like shown in the attached picture. I do get that they're hard to stop spinning because of conservation of angular momentum, but that they should be able to stabilize just seems weird.
     

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  2. jcsd
  3. Jan 17, 2012 #2
  4. Jan 17, 2012 #3
    I think you misunderstood me. I'm asking how it's able to get back into the position where it stands completely upright after it's been struck and started to preces at angle. I am pretty sure I have seen that happen.
     
  5. Jan 18, 2012 #4
    My immediate guess is that it might be useful to consider the consequences of the contact point not being a perfect mathematical point, and the resulting interaction between the angular momenta of the top and the surface on which it spins...
     
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