Entangled-photon gyroscope overcomes classical limit

Fiber optic gyroscopes, which measure the rotation and orientation of airplanes and other moving objects, are inherently limited in their precision when using ordinary classical light. In a new study, physicists have experimentally ...

Gyroscopic spin with petunia seeds helps them fly farther

A team of researchers from Pomona College and the Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden has figured out how a wild petunia plant is able to fling its seeds so far. In their paper published in the Journal of the Royal Society Interface, ...

Gravity Probe B confirms two Einstein theories

(PhysOrg.com) -- Stanford and NASA researchers have confirmed two predictions of Albert Einstein's general theory of relativity, concluding one of the space agency's longest-running projects.

Voyager seeks the answer blowin' in the wind

(PhysOrg.com) -- In which direction is the sun's stream of charged particles banking when it nears the edge of the solar system? The answer, scientists know, is blowing in the wind. It's just a matter of getting NASA's Voyager ...

Walls falling faster for solid-state memory

After running a series of complex computer simulations, researchers have found that flaws in the structure of magnetic nanoscale wires play an important role in determining the operating speed of novel devices using such ...

Microsensors without microfabrication

(PhysOrg.com) -- Miniature motion sensors are everywhere these days, detecting the orientation of cell phones, deploying air bags in cars and measuring stresses in buildings and mechanical systems. But manufacturing the sensors' ...

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A gyroscope is a device for measuring or maintaining orientation, based on the principles of conservation of angular momentum. In essence, a mechanical gyroscope is a spinning wheel or disk whose axle is free to take any orientation. Although this orientation does not remain fixed, it changes in response to an external torque much less and in a different direction than it would without the large angular momentum associated with the disk's high rate of spin and moment of inertia. Since external torque is minimized by mounting the device in gimbals, its orientation remains nearly fixed, regardless of any motion of the platform on which it is mounted.

Gyroscopes based on other operating principles also exist, such as the electronic, microchip-packaged MEMS gyroscope devices found in consumer electronic devices, solid-state ring lasers, fibre optic gyroscopes, and the extremely sensitive quantum gyroscope.

Applications of gyroscopes include inertial navigation systems where magnetic compasses would not work (as in the Hubble telescope) or would not be precise enough (as in ICBMs), or for the stabilization of flying vehicles like radio-controlled helicopters or unmanned aerial vehicles. Due to their precision, gyroscopes are also used to maintain direction in tunnel mining.

This text uses material from Wikipedia, licensed under CC BY-SA