Volume 118, Number 3, May 2017
|Number of page(s)||7|
|Published online||10 July 2017|
Orientation of a floating right triangular prism
1 Chemnitz University of Technology, Physical Chemistry - Straße der Nationen 62, 09111 Chemnitz, Germany
2 Gymnasium Einsiedel - Niederwaldstrasse 11, 09123 Chemnitz - Germany
Received: 11 April 2017
Accepted: 31 May 2017
We describe the torque acting on right triangular prisms with equilateral, isosceles, and scalene bases that float on a liquid with their joining edges oriented parallel to the liquid surface. We derive from simple planar geometric calculations the torque as a function of buoyancy and orientation and the orientation at zero torque as a function of buoyancy. Our results are in agreement with earlier results by Czwalina that were limited to the case of right isosceles triangular prisms floating in such a way that the liquid surface intersects the two edges of the base that have equal length. We confirm our predictions experimentally and show that the orientation of floating prisms may be used for the remote determination of the density of liquids.
PACS: 06.30.Dr – Mass and density / 45.20.da – Forces and torques / 02.40.Dr – Euclidean and projective geometries
© EPLA, 2017
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