Tag Archives: centrifugal force

What If Earth Was Spinning at the Speed of Light?



The Earth makes one full rotation on its axis every 23 hours, 56 minutes and 4.1 seconds. And it’s not moving at the same speed everywhere. The rotational speed varies depending on your distance to the poles. This rotation makes Earth suitable for life. The diurnal cycle, or the shifting between day and night, helps keep the planet at a habitable temperature. Earth’s rotation is the driving force of weather patterns. Even tides are affected by the Earth’s spin.

So if we were to accelerate this rotation, would we completely destabilize the climate? What would happen to the length of our day? What geographical and climate changes would occur? And at what point would life on Earth cease to exist?

Transcript and sources:

Questions or concerns? Contact us at

Get our 100 best episodes in one mind-blowing book:

Join this channel to get access to perks:

Check out our other shows:
How to Survive:
Your Body on:
Crazy Creatures:

Watch more what-if scenarios:
Planet Earth:
The Cosmos:
Technology:
Your Body:
Humanity:

T-shirts and merch:
Suggest an episode:
Newsletter:

What If elsewhere:
Instagram:
Twitter:
Facebook:
What If in Spanish:
What If in Mandarin:
Podcast:

What If is a mini-documentary web series that takes you on an epic journey through hypothetical worlds and possibilities. Join us on an imaginary adventure through time, space and chance while we (hopefully) boil down complex subjects in a fun and entertaining way.

Produced with love by Underknown in Toronto:
Contact us at

#WhatIf #Earth #SpeedOfLight #Rotation #WeatherPatterns

source