g-Acceleration Calculator - Centrifuge

Calculation of the g-force of a centrifuge with a certain size and revolution speed. A centrifuge is a rotating device, which is used e.g. to separate substances. Centrifuges can be found in laboratories and production halls, but also at home. At a constant rotation, a centrifuge generates an acceleration, which depends linearly on the radius and quadratically on the speed. The larger these values, the stronger the acceleration, with the speed having the greater influence. The revolution speed is the number of revolutions per second (rps) or per minute (rpm). The radius is the distance from the center of rotation to the floor inside the centrifuge where the material to be separated rests.
Please enter two values and choose the units, the third value will be calculated.

Radius (r):
Revolution speed (n):
Acceleration (a):

Round to decimal places.

The formula for the acceleration of a centrifuge is: a = 4 π² r n²


• a salad spinner with a radius of 10 centimeters, which spins at 2 revolutions per second, already generates an acceleration of almost 16 m/s² or 1.6 g.

• a centrifuge for pilot or astronaut training has a radius of about 5 meters. At one revolution every 3 seconds, this is 20 revolutions per minute, this generates 2.2 g.

• a theoretical space station in the form of a Torus with a radius of one hundred meters that wants to simulate a gravity of one g would have to rotate almost three times per minute, i.e. about one revolution every twenty seconds.

• a typical washing machine spins at 1200 revolutions per minute. With a drum diameter of 42 centimeters, i.e. 21 centimeters radius, 338 g are achieved!

Centrifuges pose dangers. Living beings on earth are used to 1 g, higher values are detrimental to their health, the longer they are exposed to these values, the less they can tolerate a deviation from the normal valus. From around 100 g, even very short periods of time can be life-threatening for humans.
There is also danger outside the centrifuge, because enormous forces act within it and if it is overstressed, worn out or has material defects, it can fly apart and the fragments can become projectiles.

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