Monty's Book Of Why: Why Does The Earth Spin As It Does? - KMPH FOX 26 | Central San Joaquin Valley News Source

Monty's Book Of Why: Why Does The Earth Spin In The Direction It Does?

Posted:
FRESNO, Calif. (KMPH) -

Monty's Book Of Why question for Tuesday is a big one, as big as the earth itself and as old as time.

A KMPH viewer who wants to know wrote in to ask, "why does the earth spin in the direction it does?"

So why does it spin as it does?

Frederick Ringwald, professor of physics at Fresno State, says that it is a "neighborhood" thing that started a long, long time ago.

The earth spins in the direction it does because that's the overall direction that all the planets orbit around the sun, counterclockwise, as viewed from over the north pole.

The sun and most of the planets rotate in this direction, too, although Venus is an exception.

The reason is because, when the sun and the planets formed 4.6 billion years ago, the cloud of gas and dust from which they condensed by gravity compressed by a factor of a trillion, trillion (that's a 1 with 24 zeroes after it), the chances of everything falling exactly radially inward was therefore about 1 in a trillion trillion: in other words, about zero.

An overall spin was therefore put on the solar system, and this is preserved in the spins and orbits of the sun and the planets.

Professor Ringwald also says, no one knows why Venus spins backwards: one idea was that it once had a moon that crashed into it, and reversed its rotation.

Now you know.

If you have one of those nagging questions for which you would like us to help you find an answer, include the title "Monty's Book Of Why," and send me your question.

You can e-mail it to mtorres@kmph.com, or post it onto our KMPH Fox 26 Facebook page.

So send us your questions and we'll have more answers for you in the next Monty's Book Of Why.

  • Local NewsLocal NewsMore>>

  • CEO Of Fresno? Mayor Swearengin Changes Job Title On November Ballot

    CEO Of Fresno? Mayor Swearengin Changes Job Title On November Ballot

    Would you call Fresno Mayor Ashley Swearengin, the Chief Executive Officer of Fresno?Last week, the Republican nominee for State Controller changed the title of her job, from "Mayor, City of Fresno" to “Mayor/CEO”.Critics say she completely dropped anything to do with Fresno and is now calling herself a Chief Executive Officer.Political Insider Paul Betancourt says, "A few points here or there is going to make a diffe...More >>
    Would you call Fresno Mayor Ashley Swearengin, the Chief Executive Officer of Fresno?Last week, the Republican nominee for State Controller changed the title of her job, from "Mayor, City of Fresno" to “Mayor/CEO”.Critics say she completely dropped anything to do with Fresno and is now calling herself a Chief Executive Officer.Political Insider Paul Betancourt says, "A few points here or there is going to make a diffe...More >>
  • How To Spot A Fake Debt Collector

    How To Spot A Fake Debt Collector

    If a debt collector comes calling, you should go researching. That's the new advice coming from Yahoo! Finance to avoid getting scammed.Even if you get swindled, you're still on the hook to a real debt collector! That's the law.One way to spot a fraud is to look at how old the debt is. If it's 10 to 15 years old, chances are there aren't grounds for a lawsuit.Mandi Woodruff of Yahoo! Finance recommends, “Another way you can tell if you're dealing with a fraud or not is to look at the name of ...More >>
    If a debt collector comes calling, you should go researching. That's the new advice coming from Yahoo! Finance to avoid getting scammed.Even if you get swindled, you're still on the hook to a real debt collector! That's the law.One way to spot a fraud is to look at how old the debt is. If it's 10 to 15 years old, chances are there aren't grounds for a lawsuit.Mandi Woodruff of Yahoo! Finance recommends, “Another way you can tell if you're dealing with a fraud or not is to look at the name of ...More >>
  • Peanut Allergies No More!

    Peanut Allergies No More!

    Good news for the three million Americans who are allergic to peanuts.Researchers at North Carolina A T's School of Agriculture developed a new technique to remove peanut allergens.They say shelled and skinless peanuts can be treated with an enzyme that breaks down certain proteins that can trigger food–related allergies.Researchers say the process does not change the peanut's shape or shelf life.For more info, click HERE for the USDA info.More >>
    Good news for the three million Americans who are allergic to peanuts.Researchers at North Carolina A T's School of Agriculture developed a new technique to remove peanut allergens.They say shelled and skinless peanuts can be treated with an enzyme that breaks down certain proteins that can trigger food–related allergies.Researchers say the process does not change the peanut's shape or shelf life.For more info, click HERE for the USDA info.More >>
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and KMPH. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.