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From a Balloon (Posted on 2005-07-07) Difficulty: 3 of 5
If a stone is dropped from a balloon on a still day, does the stone fall directly below the balloon, or to the west or east of it?

No Solution Yet Submitted by Erik O.    
Rating: 3.0000 (5 votes)

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No Subject | Comment 27 of 33 |
with no wind, one may be quick to conclude that the stone would fall directly downward... however this is an incorrect conclusion... here is why

the earth rotates eastward, therefore, objects not bound to the earth, and not in orbit around earth, (such as air)  will have a relative inertia to the west. this inertia acts on the balloon with a greater force than on the rock because of differences in surface area and density.  thus the rock will appear to drop toward the east.

  Posted by Jud on 2005-08-11 13:44:54
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