Table of Contents
We know that the planets in the Solar System, including Planet Earth, rotate around the Sun at their own rates of rotation. Earth’s rotation is one of the ways that make the planet friendly and inhabitable. The rotation of the earth around the sun on its axis is what is responsible for day and night. The Earth, like most planets and objects, rotate in a forward direction. It takes the planet 365.25 days to go round the sun. However, recent studies indicate that the Earth’s rotation is slowing down. It is estimated that in 100 years a day will be about two milliseconds longer. But what will happen if the Earth stopped spinning?
Imagine you are in a fast-moving car and the car stopped suddenly. What would happen if you did not have your seatbelt in place? The earth is always in motion, so are other things including the atmosphere. If the earth stopped moving suddenly, everything on the surface would be destroyed because the atmosphere would keep spinning. Everything on earth would experience a sideways deceleration of 0.75 of Earth’s gravity. It would feel like things were at an angle of 380 from the vertical, enough for most buildings to fall over. Here are exactly what would happen if the earth was brought to a complete halt.
Only One Daylight And One Night In A Year With Wild Temperatures
If the earth stopped spinning, it would take a whole year for the planet to achieve what it normally pulls off in a day. The cycle from day to night and back today would take a whole year to be accomplished. Everywhere on the planet will receive six months of continuous daylight and another six months of continuous darkness just like the North and South Poles today. However, every region will still experience the different seasons only that temperature swings from one season to the other would be greater for regions around the equator. Because regions near the equator are close to the sun during the hot months, temperatures in these regions may rise to well over 1000C. Lakes and water bodies in these places will likely boil and evaporate. Plants, animals, and the people living in these areas will also be adversely affected. Regions away from the sun will be extremely dark and cold, making life even unbearable.
Oceans Will Move To The Poles And A Supercontinent Created
People will not only contend with the darkness and extreme heat, but with even a bigger problem. The centrifugal force that results from the Earth’s rotation causes the planet to bulge along the equator. It is this force that makes the Earth look a bigger in the middle. The earth’s diameter measured at the poles is slightly smaller than when measured at the equator. It is because of the bulge that the water has been held some 8 kilometers higher. This means that without the spin the planet will not bulge and the extra water in the ocean around the equator would move to the poles, creating a huge belt of land or a supercontinent around the equator separated by two massive oceans to the North and South Poles. The two polar oceans will be totally disconnected. In the north, Canada, Asia, the US, and most parts of Europe would be underwater.
No More Magnetic Field To Shield Us From Harmful Solar Winds
Earth’s magnetic field shields the planet from solar winds that would otherwise erode the ozone layer and leaves us exposed to the harmful ultraviolet radiation. If the earth stops spinning this important magnetic field will go away. It is widely believed that the Earth’s magnetic field is generated as a result of the Earth’s inner core rotating faster than the outer core. If both the inner and outer cores stopped rotating, the mechanism behind this magnetic field might as well stop, leaving the inhabitants of the earth exposed to the harmful solar winds.
What Will Become Of Us?
While humans can adapt to different situations, the survival in the new environment created if the earth stopped spinning would be a great challenge. Although we would light our homes in darkness and cool them during high temperatures, it would be difficult for crops to survive, putting an entire food chain in danger. It will be the end of us if the food chain is destroyed.
About the Author
John Misachi is a seasoned writer with 5+ years of experience. His favorite topics include finance, history, geography, agriculture, legal, and sports.
Your MLA Citation
Your APA Citation
Your Chicago Citation
Your Harvard CitationRemember to italicize the title of this article in your Harvard citation.