Department of Physics, Lund university

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The Enterprise is one of the classic rides from Huss who describe the ride as follows: "The ENTERPRISE 2G/2GH features a lifting arm which pivots up to 90°. In the vertical position guests experience a permanent looping ride with an exciting acceleration of up to 2.5g." Read more about the Enterprise 

The centre of the ride is to the right of the rider when the ride is in the starting position, whereas in the highest point, the gondola swing out making the heads of the riders point to the center.

The Victoria Physics Teachers offer worksheets for the rides in Lunapark, Melbourne. According to the worksheet for the Enterprise, the radius is 8.1m from center to seat.

The graphs below show the G-forces on the rider in the "vertical" and "longitudinal" direction, respectively, varying between 2.5G and 0.5G and ±1G, respectively.

Questions to consider: 

  1. What forces act in the direction of motion in this ride in the different points as you move around a circle in a vertical plane?
  2. If the largest vertical force on the rider is 2.5mg, how large is the centripetal acceleration?
  3. What speed is required for this acceleration if R=8.1m?
  4. How many seconds are required for a full turn? (Compare with the graphs)
  5. How large is the vertical force on the rider in the highest point?
  6. Does the longitudinal force have a maximum value (positive = forward) just before or just after the highest point of the ride? (Compare your answer with a more detailed graph.)
  7. In the graphs below, the start of the motion is characterised by a small positive force in the direction of motion (x), followed by an increased "vertical" force as the speed increases, and the gondola form an angle to the vertical. What value do you expect for the  force in the z direction of the rider when the centripetal acceleration has reached its maximum value? (Compare with the graph below).

Pitch, yaw and roll in the enterprise: Interpreting rotation measurements.

Rotation data collected together with the accelerometer data are discussed on a separate page