Gravity: your results may vary

Posted: April 1, 2011 in Songs of Space and Nuclear War
Tags: , , ,

weird gravityYou have to go to the BBC site to check out the interactive tool which allows you to rotate the earth back and forth to get a big picture view of the earth’s gravity.

The data came from the GOCE (Gravity Field and Steady-State Ocean Circulation Explorer) satellite.

Since gravity varies, might time as well?  Of course!

A caution to the viewer from the BBC site:  the picture is “a highly exaggerated rendering.”  How much so?  “The differences have been magnified nearly 10,000 times to show up as they do in the new model.”

Oh.  So it this even a big deal in any way?  Kinda.  GOCE can

“…measure one part in 10 trillion; that’s beyond what we understand in our daily experience.”

But what does it mean on earth?

…a boat off the coast of Europe (bright yellow) can sit 180m “higher” than a boat in the middle of the Indian Ocean (deep blue) and still be on the same level plane.

And what will this information be used for?  Studies, I’m guessing, by the academic-industrial complex.


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