The Slinky Drop

The Slinky
My explanation for dropping a hanging slinky:

The contraction force (the spring attraction) in a slinky is like a resistance and is retarding the travel of kinetic information from the top of the slinky to its bottom. The point of change is at the top because that is where the state change begins (we drop it). The top of the slinky is falling faster than the rate of free fall because it’s rate of downward motion is amplified by its inward (and in this case, vertical) contraction forces. The bottom of the slinky does not move because the contraction force is retarding and outrunning the free fall force and kinetic information, therefore the bottom acts unaware it was let go at the top. This effect happens to such a degree that the top of the slinky, and other parts below, race downward to impact the bottom of the slinky in a surprising fashion. This occurrence often causes much debate.

Hanging SlinkyRemember: The slinky is not stretched out in a uniform manner because the top is supporting more weight than the parts of the slinky at the bottom, so the contraction forces are off-center and concentrated at the top, and they are variable. This causes: a great deal of added acceleration downward at the top, while entirely nullifying the upward attraction at the bottom, and the bottom also holds in equilibrium against the downward gravity force until it is impacted by the slinky parts above. Again, the contraction force is amplified at the top because it is stretched out more than it is at the bottom.

-Jeremy Edward Dion

Check out this slinky experiment in action:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eCMmmEEyOO0

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Venus Transit

Today I watched Venus transit across our solar disc. It was beautiful. I watched it on a NASA web stream. I had been anticipating this day for a while. Astronomy is something that interests me and I’m happy I was able to catch a glimpse of Venus with my own eyes. It was cloudy earlier in the day but it cleared up by the time of first contact when Venus began voyaging across the sun. Very briefly I viewed the Venus transit with a pinhole projector I manufactured out of two toilet paper rolls, tin foil and wax paper. It was awesome. After some trial and error, I was able to enhance the image and see a super tiny black dot. I may never be able to see Venus again in this fashion, as her next transit is in 2117.

I will write more on this when Venus completes her transit shortly.

I watched her come and I watched her go. She brought with her a century of knowledge I would have never known. I am thankful to witness the goddess on the go as a small speck on the face of Sol.

-Jeremy Edward Dion