Science

What would happen to ocean tides on Earth if Earth stopped rotating?

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  1. Of all the things to worry about, this takes the cake!

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    Ms. Sue
  2. This is an actual question on my homework...

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  3. Textbook authors can find strange ways to word some questions. <g>

    This site has a good answer to the question.

    http://www.moonconnection.com/tides.phtml

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    Ms. Sue
  4. Most of the diurnal tide motion is caused by the rotation of earth under the moon.
    The moon pulls hard on the part of earth closer to the moon, that is a high tide when you look up at the moon
    However you get a second high tide that day when the moon is on the opposite side from you because on that side you are further from the center of gravity of the earth moon system and the pull of the moon is weaker on the water so it swells up (away from center).
    That whole thing would be obliterated, but that would be the least of our worries.

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  5. So the oceans would gravitate to other locations, altering the geography of the planet and the tides would be weaker? or would the tides be stronger, or remain the same?

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  6. They would smooth out and there would be no diurnal motion of the water surface. Boring, like a lake :)

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  7. By the way tides are much more complicated than the explanation I just gave which is attributable to Isaac Newton himself. They are fundamentally a wave motion pulled around and around the earth by the interaction of earth and moon gravity. However in the deep open ocean they are almost indetectable. As they approach the shore they build up and sometimes if a bay happens to have a fundamental period of motion that is around a twelve hour period, the water sloshes up and down the bay in phase with the moon effect and the tides can become huge. (eg - Bay of Fundy)

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