Reference Terms
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Coriolis effect

The Coriolis effect caused by the rotation of the Earth is responsible for the precession of a Foucault pendulum and for the direction of rotation of cyclones.

In general, the effect deflects objects moving along the surface of the Earth to the right in the Northern hemisphere and to the left in the Southern hemisphere.

As a consequence, winds around the center of a cyclone rotate counterclockwise on the northern hemisphere and clockwise on the southern hemisphere.

However, contrary to popular belief, the Coriolis effect is not a determining factor in the rotation of water in toilets or bathtubs.

Note:   The above text is excerpted from the Wikipedia article "Coriolis effect", which has been released under the GNU Free Documentation License.
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