oPhysics: Interactive Physics Simulations

Rotation, Sliding, Rolling, and Friction

This is a simulation of a circular object given an initial translational velocity on a horizontal surface. Users can change the type of object (solid sphere, solid cylinder, etc.), the mass, the radius, the coefficient of friction, and the initial velocity. You can view a realistic animation of the rolling with slipping and watch as it changes to pure rolling without slipping. As the object slips along the surface, the kinetic friction between the object and the surface exerts a torque that causes the object to begin rotating. When the rotational velocity gets big enough, the object will roll without slipping.