Monday, October 02, 2006

An interesting demonstration of the butterfly effect?

This article provides an interesting demonstration of the butterfly effect or rather the notion that remote events can have far reaching and unforeseen consequences. It would appear that the recent breakup of one of the Antarctic glaciers was due to a winter storm in Alaska. The waves from the storm traveled nearly from one pole to the other in order to wiggle a very big chunk of a glacier off into the ocean. It is always interesting to see phenomenon that I've known about since highschool demonstrated some 15 years later on a very large scale. Granted, it was a winter storm and not a butterfly flapping its wings, and the propagation of a wave through water is pretty predictable, but I'm sure a butterfly was involved somewhere in the picture.

1 comment:

Shirley said...

The December 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami reached Antarctica and produced small but measurable tidal diffrences (7.9 to 15.7 in) in North and South America. The Earth also wobbled on its axis, shortened the length of a day by 2.68 microseconds, has caused a shift notable shift in mass in the area of the earthquake and caused other earthquakes. Mother nature can be a bitch.