How Fast Does the Earth Spin? Earth vs Engineered
Earth spins at an incredible 1000 miles per hour (1600 km/hr).
Think about it:
If you stick a giant pole in the ground at the equator, you’d see it spin with a circular velocity of 1600 km/hr.
That’s fast! But how fast is that?
I’m going to show you how Earth’s rotation compares against the fastest things known to man.
And I bet you that you’ll never guess what’s the fastest.
Come along and join us to see how Earth’s spin measures up against everything else.
On the race track with Usain Bolt
Usain Bolt is insanely fast.
With a top speed of about 44.7km/hr (27.8 mph), his stride can break speed limits on some streets.
Despite being the fastest man alive, he staggers behind Earth’s rotation speed.
If Usain Bolt kept his top speed for 1 full day, he’d run a bit over 1000 km.
Impressive to say the least.
But the Earth’s spin would lap Usain Bolt more than 35 times!
In the African savannah against a cheetah
Cheetahs are the fastest living land animal.
They run in short bursts at speeds up to 120 km/h (75 mph) to catch their prey.
They’re not good long distances runners. But their stride makes them faster than Usain Bolt.
When you compare a cheetah’s top speed to Earth’s spin, it’s still 13 times slower.
Ok, living things on the ground aren’t making the cut. How about something we’ve engineered?
On the race track against a car
At the moment, the fastest car in the world is the Hennessey Venom F5.
It’s the all-American engineered design with a sick amount of horsepower.
At speeds over 300 km/h, it takes a special kind of maniac to sit in the driver’s seat.
Even with its neck-bending speed, it’s still 5 times slower than the rotation of Earth.
So what about on rails? Can we get even faster?
On rails against a bullet train
The bullet trains in Japan are an engineering marvel.
The first thing you’ll notice is its sleek, aerodynamic design.
It’s the apex of human ingenuity on rails capable of reaching speeds up to 400 km/h.
Still, the Earth’s rotation is 4 times faster.
Let’s go to the air. Maybe she we take away the friction of ground, we can reach speeds even greater.
Diving through the air versus a Peregrine Falcon
Peregrine falcons are the fastest animal in the air.
And the truth is, it’s the fastest on land and sea too.
During dives, they can reach speeds up to 385 km/h (240 mph).
That’s faster than the Hennessey Venom F5.
But if you compare it to our spinning Earth, it’s still 4 times slower.
From the barrel of a gun
At this point, nothing has even come close to the speed at which the Earth spins.
Not even half the speed the Earth turns.
Well, I think we’ve finally found a worthy competitor.
It turns out that it is faster than the Earth’s spin at about 5150 km/hr (3200 mph).
That’s more than 3 times faster.
In the sky against a jet
The North American X-15 is VERY powerful.
Extremely, EXTREMELY fast.
And it’s the fastest jet plane ever built.
It’s clocked at a top speed of 4,520 mph.
So that means it can fly at about a Mach 6.
The North American X-15 is more than 4.5 times Earth’s rotation.