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Activity Discussion Science & Technology Flag wave in the wind Reply To: Flag wave in the wind

  • Tinkle

    June 10, 2024 at 12:59 pm
    Not Helpful

    A flag waves in the wind due to the difference in air pressure created by the movement of air around the flag. As the wind blows, it creates an area of lower pressure on the leeward (downwind) side of the flag. This lower pressure area causes the flag to be pushed or “pulled” in that direction, resulting in the waving motion.

    The specific mechanics are as follows:

    1. The wind blows against the flag, creating an area of high pressure on the windward side.

    2. On the leeward side, the wind rushing past the flag creates an area of lower pressure.

    3. The difference in pressure between the windward and leeward sides causes the flag to be pushed/pulled toward the leeward side.

    4. As the flag is pushed/pulled, it bends and ripples, creating the distinctive waving motion.

    5. The flexible nature of the flag material allows it to continue bending and flexing as the wind direction and speed changes, sustaining the waving pattern.

    This complex interplay of air pressure and the flag’s physical properties is what gives flags their iconic waving behavior in the wind.

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