centrifugal force

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centrifugal force (countable and uncountable, plural centrifugal forces)

  1. In everyday understanding, the effect that tends to move an object away from the center of a circle it is rotating about (a consequence of inertia).
  2. (physics) In a rotating reference frame, the apparent force that seems to push all bodies away from the centre of rotation of the frame and is a consequence of the body's mass and the frame's angular speed. It works in conjunction with the Coriolis force to give correct motion.
    • 2008, BioWare, Mass Effect, Redwood City: Electronic Arts, →ISBN, OCLC 246633669, PC, scene: Citadel Station: Statistics Codex entry:
      Although the Citadel is equipped with mass-effect-generating element-zero cores, most of the gravity on the station is generated by the centrifugal force of rotation.
  3. (physics) In circular motion, the 'reactive' centrifugal force is a real force applied by the accelerating body that is equal and opposite to the centripetal force that is acting on the accelerating body.
  4. (physics) In polar coordinates, the apparent radial force that acts away from the center and is a consequence of the body's angular speed around the origin.