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Author Topic: Can cow farts make the Earth rotate faster?  (Read 56998 times)

Offline Airthumbs

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Can cow farts make the Earth rotate faster?
« on: 28/06/2011 11:07:44 »
If all the cows in the world all lined up facing east to west would their fart power speed up the rotation of the Earth?


 

Offline Don_1

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Can cow farts make the Earth rotate faster?
« Reply #1 on: 28/06/2011 13:18:04 »
I really don't know, but I'll tell you this much, I wouldn't fancy being stood behind them when they try!
 

Offline Mr. Data

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Can cow farts make the Earth rotate faster?
« Reply #2 on: 28/06/2011 13:40:46 »
If all the cows in the world all lined up facing east to west would their fart power speed up the rotation of the Earth?

They would require a propoulsion system (their farts) to overcome their own individual masses and the earths mass respectively. In conclusion, to generate such energy, they would be flying our airspace first, before having an impact on the rotation of the earth.
 

Offline Mr. Data

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Can cow farts make the Earth rotate faster?
« Reply #3 on: 28/06/2011 13:41:23 »
So cows and pigs may fly first...
 

Offline Airthumbs

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Can cow farts make the Earth rotate faster?
« Reply #4 on: 28/06/2011 20:57:09 »
Fascinating thought,  ;D
 

Offline imatfaal

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Can cow farts make the Earth rotate faster?
« Reply #5 on: 29/06/2011 10:08:22 »
The effect would be immeasureably small - but yes.  Its equal and opposite reaction

edit

The result would be better if you had some system of lighting the farts - and really quite spectacular
 

Offline Airthumbs

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Can cow farts make the Earth rotate faster?
« Reply #6 on: 29/06/2011 15:54:55 »
Lighting them would be expensive but easy, all you need is a flatulent detector attached to the rear end so to speak, this could have a built in ignitor.  I imagine there might be a few singed farmers though  ;D
 

Offline imatfaal

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Can cow farts make the Earth rotate faster?
« Reply #7 on: 29/06/2011 15:56:27 »
It would make one heck of a youtube clip :-)
 

Offline Airthumbs

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Can cow farts make the Earth rotate faster?
« Reply #8 on: 29/06/2011 16:43:47 »
It would make one heck of a youtube clip :-)

Stop it your giving me ideas, there is a cow shed down the road!
 

Offline horizon

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Can cow farts make the Earth rotate faster?
« Reply #9 on: 29/06/2011 16:58:09 »
Cows farting a big C02s problem. Its true (but I cant be bother though to find any link, but google it).
 

Offline Airthumbs

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Can cow farts make the Earth rotate faster?
« Reply #10 on: 29/06/2011 17:04:54 »
Cows farting a big C02s problem. Its true (but I cant be bother though to find any link, but google it).

Don't think it's the Co2 you have to worry about here!  But if Co2 did smell like cow farts I expect breathing out in someones direction would be quite unpleasant....
 

Offline Mr. Data

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Can cow farts make the Earth rotate faster?
« Reply #11 on: 02/07/2011 16:48:05 »
Though even all the cows in the world could not turn it back - you would need something to the scale of massive energy factors. This is an educated statement, not one of empiracle fact, but I have never seen any calculations describing how much energy would be needed to stop the earths expansion. I did see this website which looked ok, but not sure how accurate it is, that the rotation of the earth depended on energies to stop it exceedingly high: http://www.madsci.org/posts/archives/1999-10/939644636.Ph.r.html
 

Offline Geezer

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Can cow farts make the Earth rotate faster?
« Reply #12 on: 02/07/2011 19:04:23 »

how much energy would be needed to stop the earths expansion.


I didn't know it was expanding.

Anyway, imatfaal is quite correct. The answer is yes. It's simply a question of the reaction produced by accelerated mass (in this case methane).
« Last Edit: 03/07/2011 07:51:46 by Geezer »
 

Offline Bored chemist

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Can cow farts make the Earth rotate faster?
« Reply #13 on: 03/07/2011 14:17:08 »
Newtons laws show that there would be no net effect. The cows' farts would push the air and the air would push the ground. After a very short while the effect would cancel out.
On the other hand, if you got all the cows to line up and walk Eastward then you would get a net push on the earth. It would be tiny, but it would be real.
 

Offline Geezer

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Can cow farts make the Earth rotate faster?
« Reply #14 on: 03/07/2011 18:12:10 »

Newtons laws show that there would be no net effect.


BC, think about that the next time you are in an aeroplane, because, if you are right, it ain't going anywhere.
 

Offline Mr. Data

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Can cow farts make the Earth rotate faster?
« Reply #15 on: 03/07/2011 18:17:21 »

how much energy would be needed to stop the earths expansion.


I didn't know it was expanding.

Anyway, imatfaal is quite correct. The answer is yes. It's simply a question of the reaction produced by accelerated mass (in this case methane).


lol... hahahaha

yes... rotation!!! That was melded from a different convo altogether :P
 

Offline horizon

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Can cow farts make the Earth rotate faster?
« Reply #16 on: 03/07/2011 21:20:15 »
Cows farting a big C02s problem. Its true (but I cant be bother though to find any link, but google it).

Don't think it's the Co2 you have to worry about here!  But if Co2 did smell like cow farts I expect breathing out in someones direction would be quite unpleasant....

http://www.independent.co.uk/environment/climate-change/cow-emissions-more-damaging-to-planet-than-cosub2sub-from-cars-427843.html
 

Offline Geezer

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Can cow farts make the Earth rotate faster?
« Reply #17 on: 03/07/2011 22:18:03 »
Don't think it's the Co2 you have to worry about here!  But if Co2 did smell like cow farts I expect breathing out in someones direction would be quite unpleasant....

Didn't you watch Mary Poppins?

"Supercalafragalisticexpihalitosis"
 

Offline Airthumbs

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Can cow farts make the Earth rotate faster?
« Reply #18 on: 04/07/2011 14:40:28 »
Thank goodness computers don't replicate images or words with smells yet!!

Ok so we have established that my original question is unlikely to effect the speed of the Earths rotation.  How about things like the asteroid that contributed towards the extinction of the dinosaurs, or large volcanic eruptions.  The earthquake in Japan recently had enough force to knock the earth of its axis, although a tiny amount.
What I guess I am trying to get at is that a lot of people seem to think the Earth has remained in this cyclic orbital state for millennia. 
We know that several very large objects impacted the Earth over its history and I wonder to what extent these types of events could have altered the Earths climate.

It seems that the cows would probably cause some kind of methane storm and that's about the full extent of it but what about events unfolding in the past, big events, events with a huge amount of energy?
 

Offline Bored chemist

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Can cow farts make the Earth rotate faster?
« Reply #19 on: 04/07/2011 19:03:37 »

Newtons laws show that there would be no net effect.


BC, think about that the next time you are in an aeroplane, because, if you are right, it ain't going anywhere.
A lot of people might have correctly assumed that I meant no effect on the Earth's rotation.

Obviously there would be effects. For example, if you were behind the cows you would probably notice. If you were smoking at the time you might notice something else too.
However neither the flatulent cows, not my air travel make much odds to the Earth's rotation.
 

Offline Geezer

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Can cow farts make the Earth rotate faster?
« Reply #20 on: 04/07/2011 19:10:29 »

Newtons laws show that there would be no net effect.


BC, think about that the next time you are in an aeroplane, because, if you are right, it ain't going anywhere.
A lot of people might have correctly assumed that I meant no effect on the Earth's rotation.

Obviously there would be effects. For example, if you were behind the cows you would probably notice. If you were smoking at the time you might notice something else too.
However neither the flatulent cows, not my air travel make much odds to the Earth's rotation.

If the cows were all pointing their bums in the same direction, the net effect would be nonzero. Admittedly it would be very difficult to detect the effect, but Newton's laws would still apply.
 

Offline Airthumbs

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Can cow farts make the Earth rotate faster?
« Reply #21 on: 04/07/2011 21:52:13 »
I think science is fantastic when you can get the most intellectual people on here to state that "yes, them there cow farts all lined up would be changing the earths rotation"  According to Newton that is.

I say that with the greatest of respect because most of the time the same people post stuff about quantum physics and particle accelerators that I find tough to grasp..   ;D
 

Offline Bored chemist

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Can cow farts make the Earth rotate faster?
« Reply #22 on: 05/07/2011 06:56:38 »

Newtons laws show that there would be no net effect.


BC, think about that the next time you are in an aeroplane, because, if you are right, it ain't going anywhere.
A lot of people might have correctly assumed that I meant no effect on the Earth's rotation.

Obviously there would be effects. For example, if you were behind the cows you would probably notice. If you were smoking at the time you might notice something else too.
However neither the flatulent cows, not my air travel make much odds to the Earth's rotation.

If the cows were all pointing their bums in the same direction, the net effect would be nonzero. Admittedly it would be very difficult to detect the effect, but Newton's laws would still apply.

Still wrong.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Angular_momentum
 

Offline imatfaal

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Can cow farts make the Earth rotate faster?
« Reply #23 on: 05/07/2011 09:21:41 »
two rockets diametrically oppposed and with opposite direction of thrust constitute an external torque; otherwise a catherine wheel wouldn't spin and a spacecraft wouldnt be able to change its inclination, heading, or yaw
 

Offline Airthumbs

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Can cow farts make the Earth rotate faster?
« Reply #24 on: 05/07/2011 16:03:58 »
So would two diametrically cows operate in the same way, given that the thrust is generated by, well you know what, lol
 

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Can cow farts make the Earth rotate faster?
« Reply #24 on: 05/07/2011 16:03:58 »

 

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