M asked in Science & MathematicsPhysics · 9 years ago

# does the rotation of the earth effect a plane ride time?

If you take a plane from florida to cali, would the rotation of the earth make the plane ride a little longer than if you where to fly from cali to florida?

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• Anonymous
9 years ago

You would think so, but the fact is, no, it doesn't. For a start, you aren't actually leaving the earth for orbit, you are traveling inside the atmosphere, so you are still essentially traveling with the earth.

Consider, when you jump, do you come back down where you aim, or does the earth spin a few inches under you, leaving you to land in some different spot? And the answer, of course, is that you simply come down where you aim, because you and the earth's surface are traveling together (the earth's spin has already imparted its angular momentum to you). Expanding the scale of this to airplanes doesn't actually make it different. You have to leave the earth entirely, so that you are no longer traveling within the earth's blanket of air, for the earth's spin underneath you to become an important effect.

What has a real and much bigger effect than you would expect on flight times is headwind or tailwind. Whether a plane is flying with or against the push of the wind can make a difference of hours. And this is why east-to-west or west-to-east flight times can be so different -- because pilots can either use, or have to stay out of, the jet stream winds.

• Anonymous
4 years ago

not adequate so you may well be conscious. you're already rotating with the earth. there's a small west deflection as you upward thrust, east as you descend, east as you go north, west as you go south, (interior the northern hemisphere), with the aid of 'corriolus stress', (wiki it), regardless of the undeniable fact that it is going ignored.

• 9 years ago

no, it is as if you are walking. The distance is always the same and the Earth is always rotating.