Site Contents:

The site provides links to two papers on Slinky behavior dealing with the fundamental oscillation frequency and the kinematics of a falling Slinky. The Slinky model is one which makes use of simple mechanical concepts such as the center of mass. The treatment is comprehensible to 1st and 2nd year physics and engineering students. This approach stands in stark contrast to the wave concept approach previously used in the analysis of Slinky motion.

The site is maintained by Phil Gash, Professor of Physics, California State University, Chico, CA 95926. The author welcomes and solicits comments and criticism of the linked papers. Email address:

Fundamental Slinky Oscillation Frequency using a Center-of-Mass Model

The paper deals with the fundamental Slinky frequency and is addressed to 1st and 2nd year physics and engineering students. The treatment contains no calculus, it is a simplified solution of a simple problem. Click Here to download the paper.

Kinematics of a Falling Slinky using the Center-of-Mass Model

The paper discusses the physical processes that explain the experimental observation of the non-intutive kinematic behavior of the top coil of a vertically hanging Slinky released from rest. The coil's velocity reaches a maximum and then decreases until the Slinky is completely collapsed. At which time the velocity is equal to that of the Slinky's COM at the collapse location. Click Here to download the paper.

Rational for a web presentation in contrast to a paper journal publication.

Current faculty look to paper journals for information. Our students, the future faculty members, look to search engines for information. Hence, future information will be obtained from search engines and paper journal information will diminish. These two papers are a step in the direction of future information access.