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centrifugal (adj) radiating; moving away from the centre of revolution.

Centrifugal force acts on a body revolving around a centre, and makes it move away from the centre. For example, holding the light end of a long key chain, if we turn it, we feel the key-bunch-end of the chain exerting a force on our hand and showing a tendency to move away from our hand. If we release it, the key chain falls off at a distance. The force which we feel on our hand, and moves the key chain away from our hand is centrifugal force. The force is used in a number of machines like the centrifuge which by turning can separate solids from liquids in a mixture, so that the liquids can be studied.

  • Dryers have centrifuges which, by making use of centrifugal force, can remove the moisture in clothes.
  • The centrifuge, a rotating machine, is used in medical laboratories to separate body fluids from solids in a mixture, by generating centrifugal force, by turning the container at its center.
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Last Modified : 11-May 2009
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