Nose Out of Joint
Photo by James Riordon
Tim Gay’s nose is out of joint because, as shown in the picture, he tried, and failed, to balance a gyroscope on the tip of it. Gay, professor of physics at the University of Nebraska, gave a public lecture during a recent APS meeting on “the physics of football.” He has written a book with the same title and is celebrated for his video spots shown at halftime on the stadium jumbotron during Nebraska football games. The gyroscope on his nose was meant to demonstrate conservation of angular momentum–a principle of physics used by quarterbacks when they throw spiral passes.