Advertisement
Wednesday, Dec 08, 2021
Outlook.com
Last Page

Kenya Diary

Of experiments at the zero gravity point and the Coriolis effect.

Kenya Diary
Kenya Diary
outlookindia.com
-0001-11-30T00:00:00+05:53

A chapter of physics

One of the highlights of our 10-day visit to Kenya was crossing the Equator. Mount Kenya sits almost atop the line, and we are at a town called Nanyuki, a little away from the mountain, at an elevation of 6,389 feet. It’s here that we had the great moment of straddling the Equator, one foot in the northern hemisphere, one in the southern. Many of us have read about the Coriolis effect back in school. We saw this experiment live at Nanyuki town when the driver stopped near a bright painted board indicating the Equator. On seeing us, a middle-aged Kenyan came to us with a plastic jug with a hole at the bottom, a litre of water and few small pieces of sticks (like matchsticks) and an empty bowl. It was his livelihood to show this experiment to visitors. Walking ten feet north of the Equator, he poured the water into the jug blocking the hole at the bottom with his fingers. The sticks floated on the water. When the fingers were removed and water fell into the empty bowl below the sticks started rotating in a clockwise direction. South of the Equator, they rotated anti-clockwise. And at the Equator, the sticks did not move at all. The Kenyan said this was due to the Coriolis effect. He said the Equator experiences the quickest sunrise and sunset, and that here, there’s little distinction between the seasons. While many dispute these theories, I came back with a photo to adorn my desk.

Advertisement

Outlook Newsletters

Advertisement
Advertisement

Photo Gallery

Advertisement

Read More from Outlook

Why A Democratic India Must Junk Draconian AFSPA

Why A Democratic India Must Junk Draconian AFSPA

Experts believe the AFSPA has caused more harm to the Indian State in insurgency-hit areas than mitigating problems. Here’s why.

Nagaland Ambush: Not Just AFSPA, It’s Time To Do Away With Most Special Laws

Nagaland Ambush: Not Just AFSPA, It’s Time To Do Away With Most Special Laws

It may be time for India to uphold human dignity, take a hard look at some of its regressive laws like AFSPA which includes Special Laws that authorises detention without trial.

Ashes 2021-22: Australia Start Favourites - Statistical Preview

Ashes 2021-22: Australia Start Favourites - Statistical Preview

The Gabba has been like a fortress for Australia in the Ashes. The Aussies have a 12-4 win-loss record in Brisbane and they will do everything to protect that record.

Why AFSPA In Jammu And Kashmir Is Not Just A Defence Act

Why AFSPA In Jammu And Kashmir Is Not Just A Defence Act

Has the AFSPA become an ideological Act, a tool to revise Kashmir history? Many analysts believe so.

Advertisement