Archimedes' floating bodies on a spherical Earth
Archimedes was the first to systematically find the centers of gravity of various solid bodies and to apply this concept in determining stable configurations of floating bodies. In this paper, we discuss an error in a proof developed by Archimedes that involves determining whether a uniform, spherical cap will float stably with its base horizontal in a liquid on a spherical Earth. We present a simpler, corrected proof and discuss aspects of his proof regarding a spherical cap that is not uniform.
American Journal of Physics
- Pub Date:
- January 2016