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How come the water only goes down one way of any plug?

How come the water only goes down one way of any plug sockets and not the other way?
Amy Elves from Somerset (Aged 15-25)

Why does water spin one way in the northern hemisphere, and the oppisite way in the southern hemisphere?
Mary from Herefordshire (Aged 5-14)

Why does the water go down the drain one way on one side of the equator and the other side it goes the other way?
Loo Power from Swansea (age 5-14)

Why does water go down the drain different ways depending on what hemishpere you’re on?


One Response

  1. Hi Amy,

    This is to do with the so called coriolis effect, after Gaspard-Gustave Coriolis. Basically, it is because the Earth rotates around its axis. Objects that are moving on the surface of the Earth are therefore subjected to an additional coriolis force, which makes objects in the northern hemisphere want to veer to the right, and in the southern hemisphere veer to the left. There is no such effect on the equator. The coriolis force is also responsible for the rotation of large weather systems such as depressions and cyclones, which move anticlockwise in the northern hemisphere and clockwise in the southern.

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