Centrifugal force fiction

A claim of the existence of a ‘centrifugal force‘  is not strictly a logical fallacy, except when it is argued to be a real force. It is actually a fictional force that appears to draw a rotating body away from the center of rotation. It is caused by the inertia of the body, which would otherwise continue in  the direction of a straight line, if it were not for the constraining force causing  the body to rotate about the centre. Professor Julius Sumner Miller entertainingly demonstrates these forces here:

4 Comments

Filed under Logical fallacies

4 responses to “Centrifugal force fiction

  1. Andrew Penfold

    It’s not a fictional force, Tim. It’s the other half of a pair that includes a centripetal force. Unless of course you are ditching Newtons third law and the law of conservation of momentum.

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  2. Frank Smith

    With regard to centrifugal force you say: “It is actually a fictional force that appears to draw a rotating body away from the center of rotation.”

    This is not true, a centrifugal force is the outward radial force “EXERTED” by a rotating mass, just ask Newton.

    Liked by 1 person

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