Date: 1993 - 1999
What causes the Earth to rotate? What would likely happen if it
stopped rotating? Just curious.
Something called "conservation of angular momentum". The earth has
always been rotating, and that means it's going to keep on rotating forever.
This is one of those fundamental laws of physics (deriving from Newton's laws)
that nobody believes can ever be broken. However, the earth's rotation can chang e slightly over time due
to the tidal interactions with the moon and sun.
To stop the earth's rotation would require an enormous amount of energy, and
whatever did it would probably have the same destructive power as the biggest
asteroid that could ever possibly hit us. In other words, life would be
Not to mention that if the earth under our feet quit moving, we would continue
along at our current 17 miles/minute or
1000 miles/hour - can you imagine suddenly being launched out of your chair at
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Update: June 2012