Paraboloid

From Glossary of Meteorology



paraboloid

(Or equilibrium paraboloid.) The geometrical figure obtained by rotating a parabola about its axis.

In experimental meteorology and oceanography such a figure is sometimes used as the lower boundary of a model atmosphere or ocean, and is especially important because, at a proper rotation rate, it is an equipotential surface for apparent gravity in the model. If ω is the rotation rate of the apparatus, g the acceleration of local earth's gravity, z the coordinate parallel to the vertical rotation axis, and r the radial coordinate, an equilibrium paraboloid is given by
ams2001glos-Pe1
This surface is the laboratory equivalent of the spheroidal equipotential surfaces of the earth's apparent gravity field.


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