Saturday, July 14, 2012

Introduction and Water Experiment Thoughts

Hi everyone. My name is Danielle, and I work at BU as an administrator. I'm taking this class as I slowly work towards a bachelor's degree in English. I've taken a marine science class before (twice actually) where I went to Cozumel, Mexico. I learned to scuba dive and the history and life on and around the coral reefs. My second time around I did a research project on the effects of the hurricanes on Christmas tree worms in the coral reef. I moved to Boston in the last two years, and want to learn more about the harbor.

For the draining water experiment, my group observed water flowing clockwise down the drain. We filled up the sink three quarters of the way so we would be able to see a clear funnel shape form as the water drained. I believe that water in the southern hemisphere drains clockwise as well down ordinary sinks. I believe this because I remember reading an article on a website ages ago from somewhere not as reputable such as For this post, I researched some on the web and came across Alistair B. Fraser's website on the Coriolis effect ( Fraser is a professor emeritus of meteorology at Penn St University (

Basically, his website states that the Coriolis force is weak, and is only able to have an effect on large weather systems and other large bodies of water as the effect takes a significant amount of time to build up with any noticeable force. You can, however, replicate an experiment that will make the water spin in the opposite direction expected by introducing the rotation to the water that you wish it to drain. More information on the experiment can be found on his website under 'Do it yourself fakery'.  In the end, my conclusion is that water doesn't actually drain a particular way (clockwise versus counterclockwise), but is influenced by the rotation of the water when it was introduced and disturbed.

See you all in class!

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