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Celt reversals: a prototype of chiral dynamics

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  14 July 2008

H. K. Moffatt
Affiliation:
Department of Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics, Centre for Mathematical Sciences, University of Cambridge, Wilberforce Road, Cambridge CB3 0WA, UK (h.k.moffatt@damtp.cam.ac.uk)
Tadashi Tokieda
Affiliation:
Trinity Hall, Cambridge CB2 1TJ, UK (tokieda@dpmms.cam.ac.uk)

Abstract

A physically transparent and mathematically streamlined derivation is presented for a third-order nonlinear dynamical system that describes the curious chiral reversals of a celt (rattleback). The system is integrable, and its solutions are periodic, showing an infinite succession of spin reversals. Inclusion of linear dissipation allows any given number of reversals, and a typical celt's observed behaviour is well captured by tuning the dissipation parameters.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
2008 Royal Society of Edinburgh

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