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The `Indian rope trick' via parametric excitation

Research output: Working paperWorking paper and Preprints

Original languageEnglish
StateUnpublished - 2001


A seemingly paradoxical experiment is described whereby a length of wire is stabilised upside down by vertical periodic oscillation of its support. The quantitative details of the experiment reveal an upper and lower bound on the excitation frequency for stability. The results of recent theories are presented that explains the details of what is observed. It relies on a new phenomenon of so-called resonance tongue interaction. The result is verified via asymptotic calculation based on a onedimensional rod model and numerical results on a spatially discretised system of links. This novel gravity defying effect has potential application to the stabilization of other spatially extended systems via parametric excitation.

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