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Moment of Inertia in daily life


Moment of Inertia in daily life

Inertia is one of the foundational principles of classical physics, which is still used today to explain how objects respond to forces by moving in one direction or another. Inertia is derived from the Latin word iners, which means idle or sluggish.

This blog will discuss inertia moment its concept and provide examples of its application in daily life.

What is Inertia of Motion?

According to Newton's first law of motion, a body tends to remain at rest or in uniform motion. Inertia is the property of the body that keeps it in motion. Accordingly, inertia is the property of a body that opposes or resists any change in its state of rest or uniform motion.

Inertia may refer to "the resistance of an object to changing velocity" or "the resistance to changing motion." This may include changes in the speed or direction of movement. It is characterized by the tendency to continue moving in a straight line at a constant speed, even without external forces.

Inertia as a Concept

Physics is fundamentally concerned with inertia. It is bound by other fundamental concepts such as:

  • The concept of state: A system can be mechanical (static, kinematic, dynamic, deformable), thermodynamic, electromagnetic, etc. A system's state is determined by its state parameters.

  • The concept of interaction: A type of interaction occurs when two or more objects interact. In contrast to a one-way causal effect, the concept of interaction emphasizes a two-way development.

  • The concept of the process (transformation): The system's nature determines its performance. It involves the transition of a design from one state to another. This process is the result of interactions.

Moment of inertia in brief:

The rotational equivalent of mass for linear motion is the moment of inertia. Therefore, the moment of inertia is represented in the dynamics of rotational motion. An axis of rotation must be chosen to specify the moment of inertia. The moment of inertia of a point mass is the mass times the square of the perpendicular distance from the rotation axis,

I = mr2.

As any object can be built up from a collection of point masses, that point mass relationship forms the basis for all moments of inertia. The moment of inertia of an ordinary object involves a continuous distribution of mass, which is constantly changing from one rotation axis to another. Therefore, calculating moments of inertia requires calculus since this discipline can handle such continuous variables.

In angular motion, the moment of inertia plays the same role as the mass in linear motion. By adding the "product of mass" of each particle, the moment of inertia is calculated. You calculate the moment of inertia by multiplying the mass of each particle by its square of its distance from the center of rotation. Moments of Inertia are expressed as

I = ∑ni=1miri2.

A body's radius of gyration can be defined as the distance from an axis of a mass point whose mass matches the whole body's mass and whose moment of inertia matches that of the body about the axis.

I = M k2, k being the gyratory radius.

Why Is Moment of Inertia Important?

An object's moment of inertia (MOI) is one of the many mass properties that describe its stability and the forces required to change its motion. When designing and manufacturing aircraft and spacecraft, stability is crucial. A device's ability to resist external and internal forces is primarily determined by its MOI regarding different axes.

A better measurement of this value leads to a craft or equipment that meets the specific requirements of various projects in the stringent air and space industry.

Examples of Moment of Inertia in daily life:

  • Despite being turned off, the electric fan continues to run for some time. This is because the blades of the fan were moving. After being switched off, they will take time to rest.

  • The swirling motion continues after you stop stirring coffee or tea.


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