1D52.40 - Rotating Candle

Code Number:
Demo Title:
Rotating Candle
Central Forces
Area of Study:
Fluid Dynamics
Bell jar, rotating air table, candle and holder, grill lighter.

Place the lighted candle on the rotating air table and cover with the bell jar.  Make sure the bell jar is centered.  Rotate with a speed of about 1 to 2 rps.  The candle flame should point in a radial direction toward the center.  The angle of the flame will be dependent upon its radius on the air table and the rotation rate.

  • Morton Tavel, "Reference Frames", TPT, Vol. 41, #4, Apr. 2003, p. 197.
  • Paul Chagnon, "Referee's Critique", TPT, Vol. 36, #7, Oct. 1998, p. 428.
  • Qishan Mou, "A Response", TPT, Vol. 36, #7, Oct. 1998, p. 427.
  • Camille Wainwright and Richard Wiener, "Is a Density Gradient Necessary for a Rotating Flame to Bend?", TPT, Vol. 36, #7, Oct. 1998, p. 426.
  • "Editors Introduction", TPT, Vol. 36, #7, Oct. 1998, p. 426.
  • Qishan Mou, "A Candle in a Rotating Coordinate System", TPT, Vol. 35, #9, Dec. 1997, p. 542.
  • Merle Fisher, "An Experience in Observation", TPT, Vol. 7, #3, Mar. 1969, p. 166, also A Potpourri of Physics Teaching Ideas - Meachanics, p. 64.
  • M. N. Grasso, T. O. Merlo, and M. E. Lavigne, "Effective Gravitational Acceleration", AJP, Vol. 37, #4, Apr. 1969, p. 456.
  • Fl-4: Freier and Anderson, A Demonstration Handbook for Physics.
  • M-141: Richard Manliffe Sutton, Demonstration Experiments in Physics.
  • M. N. Grasso, "Effective Gravitational Acceleration", Apparatus Notes, July 1965-December 1972, p. 93.
  • Tik L. Liem, "The Gravity Machine (I)", Invitations to Science Inquiry - Supplement to 1st and 2nd Ed. p. 135.

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