Air pressure would be a problem for Earth tunnelers...

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Michael

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Michael  asked the Naked Scientists:
   
Regarding the answer to "If you jump down a hole that went through the centre of the planet, would you fall out the other end or stay in the middle?"

Seems your answer ignored a terminal velocity of about 120 mph for falling people (above the earth's surface).

Also, with the gravity gradient involved, would there also be a corresponding air pressure gradient (14 lbs/sq.in. on the surface to 0 at the centre) that would affect the viscosity of the air and cause a terminal velocity gradient - which of course would be inverse to the gravitational acceleration gradient, making this all just a really nasty word problem in physics...

Cordially,
Michael
San Diego, CA US

What do you think?
« Last Edit: 05/08/2010 09:30:04 by _system »