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Falling ladders - why does this happen?

  • čas přidán 11. 01. 2023

Komentáře • 30 432

  • cicalinarrot
    cicalinarrot Před 20 dny +241357

    Plot twist: he has no idea why that happened and he's genuinely asking, hoping that someone tells him in the comment.

    • Body Rum UAE
      Body Rum UAE Před 11 dny

      Bunch of spanners on here.
      @Wet Doggo "seems like you're butthurt about a joke 😅 sry about that"
      Assumptions are for people with poor reasoning skills.
      @Marvin Mestanza Oh, but you see, Alec's got the mechanical engineering, so no other engineers could possibly comprehend geometry.

    • gourdo2
      gourdo2 Před 13 dny

      The ladder rungs are offset diagonally and it turns out this matters. When the lower side of the rung hits the hard surface, it bounces up a bit, forcing the higher end of the rigid rung to be accelerated down. Since the rope on the lower end is slack as it bounces up, it doesn't affect the ladder, but the higher end of the rung has tension, so its rope is pulled down slightly. On the next rung, the same thing happens, but now the offset goes the other way, so the other rope is pulled down. In this fashion, each rope is being tugged down in an alternating fashion, resulting in a faster descent. In essence, the up bounce provides energy that speeds up the rate of descent of the ladder versus a ladder that is purely falling.

    • Yemen1976 MotherlandTuff
      Yemen1976 MotherlandTuff Před 13 dny

      cuz every time a step hits the table it causes a jerk like a yank pulling down the ones above

    • Wubba Lubba dub dub
      Wubba Lubba dub dub Před 13 dny

      They fall at the same rate but the one on the right is airborne for longer and has a longer fall so then it takes longer for it to hit the ground.

    • Overlord
      Overlord Před 13 dny


  • aleksander suur
    aleksander suur Před 5 dny +1493

    You can see it when you look at the strings for the ladder on left. Every time a peg hits the table, it rotates around it's center of mass, tugging the opposite string down just a bit.

    • I-Ate-Glue
      I-Ate-Glue Před 9 hodinami +1

      This was my first thought💀

    • Arctic Wolf
      Arctic Wolf Před 10 hodinami +1

      You just solved his complex homework 2nite 😂

    • Godchi1d Von Steuben
      Godchi1d Von Steuben Před 13 hodinami

      Wrong... Read my answer... How do you know the pegs rotated at all? Say they stayed exactly upright, and the chain connecting the pegs just bunched up on top of it (with a chain ladder in free fall is exactly what would happen. The pegs are dropping straight down, there's no rotation...). Recumbent energy discharge is what happened.

    • A burnt piece of toast
      A burnt piece of toast Před 14 hodinami

      @jkutnink87 sure ya did

    • A burnt piece of toast
      A burnt piece of toast Před 14 hodinami


  • Anuj Rana
    Anuj Rana Před 4 dny +552

    I think it's because the steps of the ladder are slanted alternately
    The lower end hits the table and a small torque is applied over the lenth of the rod, and as the small string is completely extended, a downward force acts on the ladder, these small forces exerted each time accumulate and as a result the ladder falls faster

    • Zero friends
      Zero friends Před dnem +1

      Even me as idiot that don’t know nothing about science knows it’s because one of the ladder was closer to the floor than other one .
      This is kind of like asking which diver going dive in the water first that one 3 feet away from the pool or that one away 6 feet away . Well common sense closest to the water dive in first because he’s closest to the water there’s no blah blah big words gibberish

    • Jonathan Kimble
      Jonathan Kimble Před dnem

      I don’t speak Italian but I think this seems right

    • B______ C_________
      B______ C_________ Před dnem

      Yes I seen same. The jerking on the tight line exerted from each rung hitting the surface and causing a ripple effect through the line forced them to snap inward pulling the top down a little-by-little. Also they are hollow slanted rungs which bounce Well when dropped on their edge causing them to do several fast flips like when dropping an empty paper towel roll center. It is the shape of the material and also what it is made out of that makes it so bouncy I am guessing it looks like PVC. fine eye to detail.👍🧐

    • Chris Graham
      Chris Graham Před dnem +1

      Agree. The rotation creates a “lever”

    • John Garner
      John Garner Před dnem

      @David Game here's an interesting further question: if the strings were placed nearer the center of the rods (more angular moment), would it fall any faster or slower?

  • Joe Dalton
    Joe Dalton Před 2 dny +4

    Each higher end of the ladder rungs accelerates upon impact due to leverage-geometry. In this way, the rungs of the ladder that come into contact with the ground pull respectively accelerate the free-falling ones additionally over the connections. That's why the left ladder accelerates more and more.

  • Adam Pittell
    Adam Pittell Před 3 dny +23

    The ladder rungs are angled, so when the table causes them to straighten, it tugs the chains a little bit.

    • harinder takhar
      harinder takhar Před 12 hodinami +1

      By far the one solution that seems more likely to me than any other I’ve seen on the comments.

  • futureboy
    futureboy Před 10 dny +3777

    It's because the rungs are angled. When the lower end of a rung hits, the downward momentum of the entire rung is turned into a rotational force on the rung which pulls the higher end down and therefore the rest of the ladder down a bit faster.

    • TheUnorthodoxy
      TheUnorthodoxy Před 5 hodinami

      @Microcephaly Prank Gone Sexual I guessed as much, thank you

    • Microcephaly Prank Gone Sexual
      Microcephaly Prank Gone Sexual Před 9 hodinami

      @TheUnorthodoxy don’t bother arguing with him, he’s 13 with a channel dedicated to SpongeBob. You can’t expect this little aspergers kid to know anything about physics; he’s googling random physics equations that have zero relevance here. Just ignore him.

    • shrimpjar2
      shrimpjar2 Před 15 hodinami

      @TheUnorthodoxy oh uh should we talk about shapes and colors instead? we can do that if you want it

    • shrimpjar2
      shrimpjar2 Před 15 hodinami

      @TheUnorthodoxy ????

    • TheUnorthodoxy
      TheUnorthodoxy Před 19 hodinami

      @shrimpjar2 no more replies, your boring me now

  • James Ross
    James Ross Před 2 dny +2

    A combination of factors: As the pieces hit the table they pivot tugging(been mentioned already) and the A ladder has a higher surface area than the B ladder after it collides with the table. More surface area equals more drag as it falls. It would interesting to see this done in a vacuum.

  • donutholebandit
    donutholebandit Před 2 dny +24

    I imagine it has something to do with the tension in the strings. The free fall ladder maintains straight, relatively tense strings due to the force of gravity pulling on it constantly, while the table ladder eventually releases said tension. Where the math goes after that is beyond me, but I'd love to hear the answer!

    • herg hergenrader
      herg hergenrader Před dnem +2

      My guess is that the left hand ladder gradually looses it's overall wind resistance as it collapses on the table , where as the one on the right does not .

    • Dakota Hinkle
      Dakota Hinkle Před dnem +2

      I would argue that the ladder hitting the table increased in tension since the rungs were twisting and bouncing around the rungs were knocked around creating more force than the g force pulling the ladder down faster.

  • Ryan Garvey
    Ryan Garvey Před dnem +2

    The impact of the rung on the table causes vibrations to travel through the rung and then through the strings. This vibration is a shear wave (i.e. S wave) that shortens the length of the string thereby applying a slight additional downward force on the next highest rung, causing it to accelerate downwards ever-so-slightly.

  • Tom Frain
    Tom Frain Před dnem

    It’s a “whiplash” effect. As the lower end of each slanted rung contacts the table it becomes a pivot point. The energy transfers to the opposite end of the rung giving a tug on the rope accelerating the fall of the ladder.

  • G Curious
    G Curious Před 12 dny +2734

    A key to this trick is the alternating slanted bars. One end of a bar hitting the table causes the other end to pull the short string due to the rotation around the center of gravity of the bar. The short string is pulled and in turn the next bar is pulled slightly. As a result, the ladder experiences more pull (downward force) compared with the other ladder.

    • Tony Rule
      Tony Rule Před 7 dny

      @The Unknown It only needs to pull one side to put a force on the entire assembly. You can see it happening if you go frame-by-frame on the video - pause it and use the comma and period key to advance and rewind one frame respectively. You can see exactly what the OP and I described occurring.

    • The Unknown
      The Unknown Před 7 dny

      @Tony Rule exactly what I said am I wrong

    • Tony Rule
      Tony Rule Před 7 dny

      @D Ziggy *_" the spin will cause yanks against the taught section..."_*
      *Taut. But, yes, that can also be a factor, but is not the primary one. It relies on the short string being in tension at some point after the rung contacts the pile, in order to transmit that additional accelerating force.

    • Tony Rule
      Tony Rule Před 7 dny

      @The Unknown No, my 'theory' does not rely on that at all. Quite the opposite - it requires the connection only allowing tension, not compression.

    • The Unknown
      The Unknown Před 7 dny

      ​@Tony Rule your theory would mean that the ropes are solid that break under compression but they are still a soft connect not a hard connect so now the center of gravity is a rotation point so every pull it will only pull that side down in return the opposite and equal reaction is the other side coming back up

  • John Gyim
    John Gyim Před 3 dny +340

    Life is shorter when you encounter a carrier terminating obstacle.

    • Leafy Guy
      Leafy Guy Před 14 hodinami

      @Ivan Allvez bro its not even that deep hes just being an emo

    • Ivan Allvez
      Ivan Allvez Před 14 hodinami

      Boooy, I was depression free before I read you comment, but now it's back 😅🥹

    • Leafy Guy
      Leafy Guy Před dnem +2

      Thats not the reason bro 💀

  • Smaug
    Smaug Před 2 dny

    Time taken is a function of changing acceleration, which depends on the mass of the ladder (or part of it) which is still falling. So time taken is different for them.

  • michael cripps
    michael cripps Před 3 dny

    It also reminds me of length contraction. From the perspective of the observer. This difference in length of each rope causes this asymmetrically or a tendency towards this asymmetry the faster this objects falls. Like the difference between two observers placed at different points of a space-time diagram approaching a blackhole spiraling inward until the inevitablety of passing through the event horizon.

  • riclozano
    riclozano Před 15 hodinami +2

    Could be because of air resistance. The ladder that remains in freefall will encounter more air resistance than the one that hits the table because in the case of the one that remains in freefall, the steps will keep on generating drag, while in the case of the ladder that hits the table, those steps stop generating drag. So at the start the difference in velocity isn't very noticeable, but near the end, the drag difference is very high, so the effect is more noticable. I also don't think it's the pegs' angular velocity that speeds it up because the end of the peg is accelerating towards earth at the same rate as the rest of the ladder? but the peg also has a horizontal distance to move, because a hypotenuse is longer than a side, so it would actually be moving downwards slower than the rest of the ladder. Idk tho, some of the things that people are saying are past my gr.9 knowledge.

  • Mike Curtis
    Mike Curtis Před 16 dny +10058

    Since the rungs are angled, the table is causing them to flatten out, which pulls down on the rung above it. This alternates left to right, gradually speeding it up.
    Edit: Never expected my comment to get so much attention. To elaborate a bit, one needs to understand that even the ladder on the right will speed up after it hits the ground, just like the one on the left. The only reason you see the difference is because the one on the left hit the table (higher ground) before the one on the right. Also, to better see the pulling effect, don't just watch the strings close to the table. Look closer to the top of the ladder, like two or three rungs from the top after the top comes into view. You can clearly see motion in the strings that is not seen in the ladder on the right.

    • Mike Curtis
      Mike Curtis Před 6 dny

      @TheUnorthodoxy so you're trying to say the table increases gravity on the left, and therefore makes the ladder fall faster? You really think the difference would be enough to be seen in the video? If that was the case, the ladder on the right would be pulled towards the one on the left. Before responding, watch the video again. Look at the rungs of the ladder near the top. You can clearly see rotational forces being applied to the rungs well before they hit the table. This motion is not seen in the ladder on the right, because it hasn't hit the ground yet.

    • TheUnorthodoxy
      TheUnorthodoxy Před 6 dny

      @Mike Curtis even if they do not fall yo the ground that is irrelevant.
      The table still has a mass greater than the surrounding area, this distorts (draws closer) the mass of the other object Ladder A.
      Each ring incrementally increases the speed of the ladder A being drawn towards the centre of mass of the table (which does exist unlike the ground you made reference to).
      This is space-time (aka temporal time), this changes the perception of speed and direction as time is the only metric we have for movement, without time there is no movement and thus no attraction and thus no gravity.
      Time is what is changing our perspective here from our reference point the Ladder A speeds up, it increases its attraction to the table more than Ladder B towards the earth.
      (This experiment was done on earth right @Mike Curtis ?)
      Everything with mass has an attraction that attraction we call gravity.
      Therefore apples do not fall to earth if thrown horizontally, they are drawn TO earth by the attraction between their masses, the apple being smaller in size and mass is overpowered by earth's mass and pull measured as 1G.
      As the apple travels (time) the apple curves from our reference frame but from the apples it is still travelling in a straight-line we threw it on.
      Time incrementally curves the apple towards the earth's massive pull (gravity) without time the apple would not travel and would not fall to earth.
      Where's your explanation?

    • Mike Curtis
      Mike Curtis Před 6 dny

      @Lookup VeraZhou is the "also" meant to suggest my comment was copied and pasted?

    • Mike Curtis
      Mike Curtis Před 6 dny

      @TheUnorthodoxy what you're not understanding is the one on the right will also speed up just like the one on the left.... ONCE IT HITS THE GROUND. The only reason the one on the left speeds up first is because it hits the table (or higher ground) first.

    • Mike Curtis
      Mike Curtis Před 6 dny

      @Cody Elliott the egg and paperclip would only fall at the exact speed in a vacuum

  • Sadat Hassan
    Sadat Hassan Před dnem

    Attraction between two bars keeps increasing as the distance between them decreases gradually after the lower bar stops falling. This creates more acceleration to the upper bar. I think that's why it falls faster.

  • Sp1der44
    Sp1der44 Před 21 hodinou

    You never fail to make me question what it is that we think we know with these videos. The phenomenon seems totally counterintuitive. Great Video as always.

  • Michael Suk
    Michael Suk Před 9 hodinami

    Looking vertically at both ladders, the vertical space in a 2D plane is the same. But as soon as one of them hits the surface, it’s space in that plane gets larger. This means that the initial impact shifted the ladder and made its area in the 2D plane larger, giving gravity more area to act on, pulling it down faster.

  • Philiberto Rodrigo
    Philiberto Rodrigo Před 3 dny

    Simple physics as you can see the chain ladder that is impacting the tables has a reaction force that slowly builds momentum pulling the rest of the ladder down. The latter ladder (nicely done) has no resistance and falls at a constant speed and velocity with the delta being the differences in space and time from the table top (first ladder) and the floor (second ladder). Hope this helps

  • Kaelen Anderson
    Kaelen Anderson Před 14 dny +5853

    This happens because each rung on the ladder is tilted. As each rung hits the table it pulls the string it's attached to downward a bit, causing the ladder to fall faster.

    • J. A
      J. A Před 9 dny

      probably the best explanation

    • Derek Stocker
      Derek Stocker Před 9 dny

      Thanks for that but I am still surprised!

    • El Chingy
      El Chingy Před 9 dny


    • Abhishek Mohanan
      Abhishek Mohanan Před 10 dny

      @John Doe tht is not how it works bro

    • Aaron Barlow
      Aaron Barlow Před 10 dny

      @John Doe The left one hits the table far earlier. The right ladder probably doesn't even hit the floor by the time the left ladder has fully collapsed. Surely you're not this stupid, are you trolling?

  • MattDragonTamer
    MattDragonTamer Před 3 dny

    The kinetic energy on the left caused a "wave" to climb up at a faster rate than it was falling. This causes a whip effect that accelerates the remaining ladder parts.
    For example, take a string and tie it to something. Grab the other end and whip it. You will see the "wave" go up at the rate you whipped it, and it will "bounce back" as a shorter but faster wave form.

  • alvaro villarroel ayala
    alvaro villarroel ayala Před 2 dny +1

    Esto sucede solo por la forma en la que las piezas estan puestas, en diagonal, al chocar una de las puntas, se genera una rotacion, que luego aplica una fuerza al otro extremo, y esto se repite hasta la ultima pieza, generando un pequeño empuje extra.

  • avagotbored🎧
    avagotbored🎧 Před 3 dny

    An object in motion stays on motion, inertia. so i’m guessing that when the object IN motion had an unbalanced force stop it (the platform pushing up against the ladder pushing down). when the ladder hit the platform it went faster because the unbalanced force essentially made the object in motion go faster. while the other ladder had nothing stopping it or causing friction, which ig made it go slower.

  • pepe go
    pepe go Před 3 dny

    when the bars on the ladder hit the table, the bars feel a certain amount of angular force, making the bars lie flat. This force jerks the rest of the ladder downward, ultimately meaning the ladder falls faster. Because the force is applied every time a bar hits the table, the ladder will continue to accelerate exponential faster than under the normal force of gravity, assuming no air resistance.

  • SniperShor
    SniperShor Před 17 dny +2683

    The ladder's steps are not parallel. And they have a specific pattern. When one step of the ladder hits the floor, it creates an unbalanced force on the step, which produces a torque that pulls the upcoming step downward. The addition of force, say torque in this case, helps the ladder's top cap fall faster than the freely falling ladder.

    • Michael Schuler
      Michael Schuler Před dnem

      @Hello There I’m thinking conservation of energy . Half the stick is slowing down

    • ismael cm
      ismael cm Před 12 dny

      @M You see the mote in your brother's eye, but do not see the beam in your own eye.

    • M
      M Před 12 dny

      @ismael cm your ignorance harms no one, but only you.

    • ismael cm
      ismael cm Před 13 dny

      @M Hahahahah, still no answers to simple questions and now you say I'm wrong but you won't say what's wrong because of how I am writing. Hahaha. Nice try little man, it's okay, don't worry, you can go, I won't hold a grudge against you.
      Keep learning physics, maybe one day you'll understand, it's okay. I wish you luck with your high school exams.

    • phil ip
      phil ip Před 13 dny

      @Didi Dogster thank you very much

  • Fluxpistol
    Fluxpistol Před 3 dny

    The key is in the fact the rungs aren’t straight so there’s extra downward force on the ladder hitting the table as the rungs act as little levers pulling the ladder down faster each time bit by bit as each rung hits

  • rafa._.
    rafa._. Před dnem

    they both have the same speed but the left one starts to “lose” mass so it goes more fast since the air don’t slow it as much as the right one with “full” mass

  • Tamlyn Burleigh
    Tamlyn Burleigh Před 5 dny +1

    I love this sort of puzzle. Thanks. I think you need to look closely at the point of impact. The rung hits the table and swerves or rotates away from the point of contact. This is probably the key.

  • Edwin B
    Edwin B Před dnem

    The weight of each slanted step, as it lands and goes horizontal, pulls down on the long string. Thereby increasing the speed of the “fall”. Essentially on is in free fall while the other is not. If the steps were horizontal they would go at the same rate. If the strings had some tensile strength it would be the opposite.

  • hefty lad
    hefty lad Před 13 dny +3865

    For those wondering, you see how the rods are alternating diagonal? When the downward part of the bottom rod hits the table, it bounces up, pulling the other side of the rod, and therefore that rope, downwards. Rinse and repeat with every rod, all pulling slightly downwards on the ladder, and now it's falling faster than the other.

    • Tarioth
      Tarioth Před 11 dny

      Had the same thought on the second playthrough.

    • knut riis
      knut riis Před 11 dny

      @Tomek Stec Try it - one rod will show you how it works.

    • Korrie Turner
      Korrie Turner Před 11 dny


    • U S
      U S Před 11 dny


    • _ hypergamy
      _ hypergamy Před 11 dny

      @owosturm the chances are very likely I think. Every time the lower side of the pole hits the table, it forces the other side to try and equalise it’s centre of gravity, which in turn pulls the ladder marginally quicker. Where as the other ladder is in free fall and will not gain kinetic momentum because it’s stagnant, very much lost in motion

  • Shawn Nicpon
    Shawn Nicpon Před 2 dny

    As the ladder on the left hits the table, the amount of rungs on the ladder in motion decreases. So the mass of the moving section decreases causing it to speed up. I thinks it’s the law of conservation of energy.

  • Patrick Robichaux
    Patrick Robichaux Před 6 dny +4

    Some rungs don't hit perfectly on center, causing movement in the y axis if the x axis is parallel to the rungs on the ladder. The force of gravity going straight down remains constant, but the pull on the y axis causes an addition downward force.

  • Damion Doe
    Damion Doe Před 2 dny

    As the one on the left hits the bottom, it’s rungs start to fall on to the rope attached to the other rungs and the rungs also fall on the other rungs as well. Each time the ladder falls on itself it speeds up its own fall rate by pulling itself down. Further: gravity is connected to weight and the weight of the bottom of the ladder right before it hits the ground changes due to the rungs falling on themselves and the ropes. (Just a guess)

  • A____ s
    A____ s Před dnem

    It’s because of the tension in the strings. When each plank hits the table, it slightly pulls the other one towards the ground.

  • Binyamin Friedman
    Binyamin Friedman Před 17 dny +1122

    As each rung hits the bottom, it creates a small moment of inertia (rotation) because one end of the rung lands first and then bounces up. When that end bounces up, it causes a slight downward tug on the other end (the side with the short string), which is still taut. This additional force causes a slightly greater acceleration to the free-falling object above.

    • Radwan M. Kassir
      Radwan M. Kassir Před 14 dny

      The air drag on the ladder falling on the table is getting less since its surface area moving through the air is getting less and less, which makes it fall faster (air drag is getting reduced).

    • Kirk Johnson
      Kirk Johnson Před 16 dny

      @noon neel No, it had never occurred to me to even consider such a situation. I suspect a similar string ladder but with parallel rungs would in fact do the same thing IF it was long enough, but only because some minor imperfection in the system would cause a rung to hit on one end before the other and that would start a chain reaction.

    • noon neel
      noon neel Před 16 dny

      @Kirk Johnson see i agree with what you said ,but tell me did you ever imagine that phenomena before looking at this experiment video???
      your reasoning is accurate ,but if the phenomena goes true for parallel rungs. i mean logically you and i both know it wont happen ,but i personally did not do the experiment so.... iam holding back

    • Kirk Johnson
      Kirk Johnson Před 16 dny

      If you pause the video right after each impact, you will notice that after each impact, there is an instant where the short string to the rung above is in tension while the long string is slack. This would appear to confirm your analysis of the problem.

    • Kirk Johnson
      Kirk Johnson Před 16 dny

      ​@noon neel No, the end that hits first experiences an upward force from the table which causes the rung to rotate ever so slightly about its center causing a tension on the opposite string and that tension pulls down on the opposite end of the rung above causing it to accelerate downward and to rotationally accelerate creating tension on the opposite string and so on and so on.

  • Jakub Pawlica
    Jakub Pawlica Před 2 dny

    I'm guessing bc the slant makes it so that when the lowest part of the prong hits something it becomes a lever with the lowest point becoming the pivot point.
    So on the prongs where the falling force in the middle of the lever remains the same the force on the farthest point from the pivot increases. So as soon as the latter hits a surface the pivot effect begins and the latter starts to increase it's speed even faster than before.

  • Pieter Lindeque
    Pieter Lindeque Před 2 dny

    Every impact point on the long end causes a sudden yanking effect on the shorter string which means there is force being transferred up the chain that accelerates each consecutive rung a bit faster downward. That's my guess.

  • Jawn Steezy
    Jawn Steezy Před dnem

    The bars on the ladder are slanted so when one side hits it bounces up pulling other side down slightly faster and after 10 bars it's a noticeable difference

  • michael cripps
    michael cripps Před 3 dny +1

    If this system was thought of as a spiral,it becomes reminiscent of DNA curling up (a double helix) reducing its length. Just think of that structure it may help you visualize it.

  • Spencer Teolis
    Spencer Teolis Před 5 dny +3

    I think the torque caused by the angled rungs is part of it but the other part is that the contact height of each subsequent rung is going up. If that wasn’t happening there would nothing causing the high end of the rung to move any faster than it was already going.

  • Seldin Gardane
    Seldin Gardane Před 3 dny

    So, what I think is happening is we're seeing a wave effect. The ladder that hits the table feels a force traveling back up the ropes, then once that force reaches the top of the ladder, it travels back down effectively increasing the ladder's overall downward velocity.

  • Carlos R. Esposito
    Carlos R. Esposito Před 5 dny +68

    Here is your answer:
    In his experiment, Professor Ruina used chain ladders, which have links connecting the rungs rather than a solid structure. He found that when the ladders were dropped simultaneously, one ladder fell faster than the other due to a phenomenon called "ladder kinematic asymmetry."
    The reason for this asymmetry is that in the ladder one side is longer than the other, which causes one side of the ladder to fall faster than the other. This effect is due to the ladder's geometry, and the way in which the ladder's links are connected, which creates an imbalance in the ladder's center of mass.
    It's important to note that the ladders in the experiment of Professor Ruina are not in a free fall state as the ladder falls its links move and bend with the ladder, creating a different dynamic than a free fall state. Also, this experiment is not representative of rope ladders, but of a specific type of ladder.

    • Richard Paul
      Richard Paul Před dnem

      @cparks1000000 because free fall has a very specific definition. In physics, free fall means the only force on a mass is gravity. In this experiment, there are multiple effects at play. Dwight's curvature comes into play, because of how the asymmetrical rungs are hitting the table at an unequal force. Using Dwight's Curvature formula from calculus, we can reasonably ascertain the velocity of each rung at the given point after the initial collision.

    • Ingmar Berg Mikkelsen
      Ingmar Berg Mikkelsen Před 2 dny +1

      Sounds like chatgpt

    • jusyoniox
      jusyoniox Před 2 dny +2

      @Tom Barron no, he's right lmao.

    • Tom Barron
      Tom Barron Před 2 dny

      @Carlos R. Esposito OK you took option 2. Ha ha.

    • cparks1000000
      cparks1000000 Před 2 dny

      How do you claim the ladders aren't in free fall?

  • EM P
    EM P Před 3 dny

    The steps are angled, such that each contact with one end imparts angular momentum at the other end, causing the ladder to fall faster than free-fall.

  • Sapphire Spire
    Sapphire Spire Před 16 dny +5697

    Because the rungs are tilted. When the rungs hit the table, they want to lay flat, but they have to rotate first, and that angular momentum pulls down on the shorter strings, which pulls the ladder down faster.

    • shubham mishra
      shubham mishra Před 21 hodinou


    • Rod Bejerano
      Rod Bejerano Před dnem

      I think it is just the air flow slowing down in ladder A. As there are less rungs affected by air drag compared to ladder b whose rungs landed dont have the air drag.

    • YTuser45
      YTuser45 Před dnem

      Thank you

    • Trippex dj
      Trippex dj Před 3 dny


    • TheGeneral
      TheGeneral Před 3 dny

      Sounds good to me, I'm drunk

  • Veronica Rossi
    Veronica Rossi Před 3 dny

    In free fall everything falls at the same time. The one that hits the table has more gravitational force because hitting the table makes it heavier and that's why it falls faster.

  • uNo U
    uNo U Před dnem

    air resistance decreases to the one on the left first reducing the friction of the first ladder while the 2nd ladder still experiences even pressure throughout the whole free fall.

  • Richard Perry
    Richard Perry Před 2 dny

    As the ladder parts hit the table the parts that become stationary on the table are having their downward acceleration halted - this means they are receiving an UPWARD acceleration to cancel out their movement. The energy to provide the upward acceleration is taken from the falling section and causes a downward force on the falling parts, adding to the acceleration due to gravity.

  • Monster Guardian
    Monster Guardian Před 2 dny

    Because of the incline on the steps, when one side of the stick hits the ground the other side is slightly pulled down and as it goes it ends up falling quicker because the ladder is pulling its self down

  • Eduardo Loureiro Gomes
    Eduardo Loureiro Gomes Před 15 dny +2205

    Due to the angle of each section, when it hits the table, it pulls the other side which is attached through the cable to the next section. The angular energy is transfered each time one side hits the table.

    • David Scott
      David Scott Před 7 dny

      Edit 1: you are correct. Edit 2: the only limit would be wind resistance which would cause it to reach terminal velocity pretty quickly.

    • David Scott
      David Scott Před 7 dny

      @Enrico Caminiti
      That would require zero external forces and some net positive internal forces from something like a spring being released. So that won’t work in this type of situation.

    • Yuko
      Yuko Před 12 dny

      @moon house kinetic movement or force when it’s stopped?

    • moon house
      moon house Před 15 dny

      @kylethekidable yeah I realized this shortly after commenting. I was thinking they could have demonstrated the same effect without the need for a table by using one ladder with staggered rungs and one ladder with parallel rungs. However, I cheated and looked up the experiment, and while they don’t say so explicitly, they may have had a good reason not to do it this way. In order to demonstrate that there was nothing special about the ladder in the left in particular, they ran the experiment again but with the ladders switched and got the same results. This wouldn’t have been possible using a staggered ladder, a parallel ladder and no table.

    • Phillip Young
      Phillip Young Před 15 dny

      This is definitely correct, also I think the rungs glancing off each other and pulling sideways (toward and away from the camera in this clip) is also adding a component to the tensions in the cables

  • Aaron Stafford
    Aaron Stafford Před 2 dny

    I think it’s because when the ladder hits the table, it causes the ladder to jerk from the bottom to the top and back down again all in a split second adding more energy to the ladder that hit the table

  • Flloyd Morgan
    Flloyd Morgan Před 2 dny

    Consider drag. Friction from the air is pushing up slowing both ladders equally.
    But as the first few ladders hit the table, the total drag reduces because those parts of the ladder are no longer falling.
    As a result, the ladder hitting the table falls at a faster rate.

  • Sean Collins
    Sean Collins Před 2 dny

    that's kind of simple, but you have to accept that gravity is a side effect of conduction, so when the ladder hits the table, it's gravitational current is upended and increases the specific gravity in the current, you can see the same thing happen in a fluid flow.

  • Nader Nader
    Nader Nader Před 4 dny

    As the left ladder hits there is a reflection of the “wave” which does not happen with the free falling ladder. The upward reflection of the wave, which creates rarefactions compresses the ladder and makes it reach the position in question faster than the other ladder.

  • Mark Whittaker
    Mark Whittaker Před 18 dny +2533

    It is because of the angled rungs. When the lower end of the rung hits the table, the rung pivots to level out. This applies a downward force on the string accelerating that side of the ladder down. This happens with each rung.

    • Jan K
      Jan K Před 13 dny

      @FWU - Finally Waking Up than give your take on this, choosen one.
      Have you payed your speeding tickets yet?

    • mauze king
      mauze king Před 14 dny

      @FWU - Finally Waking Up yep why didn't I think of that. Nobel Prize for you.

    • FWU - Finally Waking Up
      FWU - Finally Waking Up Před 14 dny

      @Brendan guys guys guys it has nothing to do with tension or shape or any of that think of it like this it doesn't matter about the beginning of the ladder it's about the end of the ladder the end of the ladder is landing earlier on one side because its destination for landing is cut in half and has a shorter distance so it's going to land sooner obviously it's the same thing like measuring the top of ladder a and it's going to land hypothetically it would land at the around the same time that be would if you watch the video

    • FWU - Finally Waking Up
      FWU - Finally Waking Up Před 14 dny

      @mauze king seriously what's wrong with all of you the reason why one land sooner than the other is because it's Landing distance is shorter there's no other reason it's obviously a child could figure it out I predicted it before before I even play the video

    • FWU - Finally Waking Up
      FWU - Finally Waking Up Před 14 dny

      @Jan K it's not air resistance smh. What's wrong with all of you that don't see the simple obvious reason why one lands first than the other?

  • Rithvik Kuttin
    Rithvik Kuttin Před 6 dny +1

    Look at this:
    when the ladder hits the table, the ropes connecting the rods get stretched into a "u" like shape facing the surface of the wall. So the force given by the rope pulls the upper rods one by one giving it more pull and in this manner the ladder falls quicker.

  • Aryan Bhajanka
    Aryan Bhajanka Před 5 dny +1

    When the ladder hits the table, the strings become loose due to which tension force becomes 0. Therefore there is no pulling force acting on the ladder after it hits the table however it does on the ladder which is free falling.

  • ME Studio
    ME Studio Před 15 hodinami

    There was a reduction in the overall mass of ladder B under the gravity, due to the obstacle it encountered

  • Nicholas Hernandez
    Nicholas Hernandez Před 5 dny +2

    I was genuinely surprised. Thought it would be even. Now I’m mildly intrigued. Thank you for that. Shows me there is still innocent magic in the world.

    • Stephen Dee
      Stephen Dee Před 3 dny

      The whole world is magic!
      We just have to know that we as humans are not smart!
      Then we shall find ALL the magic!

  • oldretireddude
    oldretireddude Před 20 dny +2030

    The angled rungs are the key to this. As a rung contacts a surface a rotational force happens to that rung causing the free end to tug harder on it's rope. The ladder that hits first begins this repeating cycle of tugging first thus completing the cycle first, dragging the last of the ladder down first.

    • rrkunath
      rrkunath Před 15 dny

      Nope. Conservation of momentum

    • Jon Towers
      Jon Towers Před 16 dny


    • Jon Towers
      Jon Towers Před 16 dny

      ​@Slick Ricknope

    • Jupiter Cyclops
      Jupiter Cyclops Před 16 dny

      The one on the left was shorter and the rungs not as deep.
      Not physics, just an old camera trick

    • Frisky Frisk
      Frisky Frisk Před 16 dny

      @Bryan Cline that is incorrect. The mechanism has nothing to do with the shape/ braiding of the rope. It has been measured and done with single strands, and usually chains. Google folding falling chain problem.

  • Asad
    Asad Před dnem

    Angular momentum of the crooked rungs hitting the surface applying downward pulling force on the rung above as the rung rotates flat/parallel to the table surface. And unless this is in a vacuum, the one hitting the table loses slight amount of air friction resistance as it gets smaller. The one still free falling the entire ladder has more air resistance slowing it down as it falls.

  • Bobbles8714
    Bobbles8714 Před dnem

    Once the rods stack up, you can see rods rolling down the stack and pulling on the cables.
    Also why it wasn’t noticeable until the end when the stack got taller.

  • Bhanu pratap Singh
    Bhanu pratap Singh Před 3 dny

    Because of the angle of these sticks when one end of a stick touches the table it's motion stops while other end remains in motion that creates torque and pulls other stick just above it that increases its velocity a bit.
    Hence, As ladder on the left side hits the surface early therefore it falls faster

  • Alexandre de Oliveira Penna

    Because of the alternating angle of each step relative to horizontal. When each one hit the table it pull
    alternately the right and left sides of ladder, with net effect of pulling the remaining of ladder down.

  • Dean Van Zelst
    Dean Van Zelst Před 20 dny +11397

    I especially liked the part where he explained why that happened

    • MonsieurFluffyPants
      MonsieurFluffyPants Před 15 dny

      @Franco M **doesn't elaborate**

    • Franco M
      Franco M Před 15 dny

      ​@MonsieurFluffyPantsYou are wrong

    • WineNot
      WineNot Před 16 dny

      If you can see there are no secrets

    • Zwenk Wiel
      Zwenk Wiel Před 17 dny

      I liked the part where he went "it's explaining time" and then explained all over the place

    • Daniel Bayley
      Daniel Bayley Před 17 dny

      This is basically an ad for a later video. Get used to it it's the future

  • منظور
    منظور Před 3 dny

    The collapsing pieces cause a wave effect to the robes.. and since the robes where straight .. so the required extra length to form a wave will pull the ladder pierces closer to each other ..
    the force of pulling the ladder pieces is not strong enough to lift lift the lower piece due to gravity
    Therefore .. the clobbering ladder seems falling faster
    But it is strong enough to pull the higher pieces down also helped by gravity

  • More Clips
    More Clips Před 2 dny

    The rebound of each plank clashing against the table causes micro tension on the cords holding the planks. Each plank that hits multiplies the effect causing couple inch advantage.

  • Quanturos
    Quanturos Před 4 dny +3

    Because the rungs are fastened to the string and aren't perpendicular to it. When one side of a rung hits, the downward momentum is augmented by the angular momentum from the rung hitting the table.

  • Clova
    Clova Před 4 dny

    When the impact of one side actually collides with the floor, it pulls the other side of the string making it slightly faster

  • Paul Girard
    Paul Girard Před 16 dny +2210

    Due to each step being inclined, one side touch the table first pulling the string of opposite side due to inertia which accelerates the fall.

    • superblahmanofdoom
      superblahmanofdoom Před 16 dny

      Inertia is it. The ladder steps fall "again" to the side and drag down the rest of the ladder faster.

    • GIGA
      GIGA Před 16 dny

      @ChefBoyareB If you look closely you will notice the one on the left is vibrating a lot more. It's gravitational pull due to the impact. Things bounce and that additional recoil as it lands the 2nd time creates a secondary pull. When you drive a car and you brake really hard your body goes forward then it goes back then it goes to its resting position that is 3 different locations. The ladder will generate gravitational pull until it stops moving.

    • Michael
      Michael Před 16 dny

      Strange though.. the left looses weight at an increasing rate to

    • GIGA
      GIGA Před 16 dny

      @ChefBoyareB no you can't. What you see are the strings caving in because they are collapsing.

    • Dominik Lizak
      Dominik Lizak Před 16 dny

      Exactly what I was thinking. NOT😂

  • ForeverTry
    ForeverTry Před 2 dny

    If you look at the previous section of rods to the one impacting the table you will notice that there is a small pull on the string. Don't know what type of energy is excerted on it but I taught it was cool to observe

  • ☆Star☆
    ☆Star☆ Před 2 dny

    Either these two:
    1. The left ladder is tilted, so when it hit the table, it slightly tugged at the string or rope, making it come down faster.
    2. As the bars pile up, there is more weight pulling the ladder down, making it go faster.

  • Peter Kortvel
    Peter Kortvel Před dnem

    As the one side of each wooden plank falls first, it bounces up slightly, what spins the wooden plank and the oposite side is pulled down, what pulls the tie above it attached to the next wooden plank - speeding up its fall.

  • SilentMusti
    SilentMusti Před dnem

    The tilt of each stick makes it such that when the bottom of a down tilting stick hits the top of an uptitlting stick the other end of the first stick is pulled down with it thus pulling the rest of the ladder down a bit more stick by stick.

  • Timo Kreuzer
    Timo Kreuzer Před 15 dny +1496

    The steps are tilted, so once the lower side hits the table, it will act as a lever, pulling on the above step at the opposite side. Since the tilt is alternating, this extra pull will be alternating between left and right, so on average both sides get a little extra pull down.

    • uday raj
      uday raj Před 14 dny

      @Reellron well thats one way to say the same thing with different words

    • William1987GTA1
      William1987GTA1 Před 14 dny

      ​@Farhad Kabir Great comment John Fetterman.

    • emmac
      emmac Před 14 dny

      @Kyle Mullaney and you're right too, it could also be a combination of many different forces for the overall effect.
      I guess you would have to do a different test and change variables

    • Ben Marolt
      Ben Marolt Před 14 dny

      ​@emmac You are saying you would accelerate beyond terminal velocity in what circumstance? Have you invented a new definition or terminal velocity?

    • emmac
      emmac Před 14 dny

      ​@Kyle Mullaney and another question I have, you notice the rungs are only pulled by each others strings, there is slack in the lines for every rung after it lands

  • Matt Jones
    Matt Jones Před dnem

    The weight of the object become less but the weight of the top gets less and less but is still over the weight needed to maximize its velocity. The other ladder is heaviest therefore slower because it is slowed in free fall to only what the entire ladder speed can be while falling. In a sense it is slowed because of its weight. The smaller the ladder gets the less of an effect gravity has allowing it to speed up.
    Or maybe not.

  • Luminal Mind
    Luminal Mind Před 3 dny

    That is a result of the tension in the strings... When the ladder hits the table you are adding vibrational energy that transfers a force and tension up the rest of the stringa slowly accelerating the ladder ahead of the straight free fall: which is simply seeking equilibrium with no added input energies. That table adds energy and the string tension varies as a result this forcing the top of the ladder downward at a faster rate.

  • Sayed Aymaan
    Sayed Aymaan Před 2 dny

    I have an answer
    We know there is a tension in string
    So as it strikes the table, the tension force is reducing hence it is able to accelerate faster with time
    If it would have been long enough then it would have accelerated even more faster

  • nvpatentlawyer
    nvpatentlawyer Před 2 dny

    Each rung is subject to air friction reducing the acceleration due to gravity. As rungs hit the table the number of falling rungs is reduced, and therefore so is the frictional slowing of the air. So the terminal velocity of the ladder on the left gradually increases while the ladder on the right is subject to friction created by all the rungs for the entire trip to the floor. You are welcome.

    HUTCH GAMING Před 13 dny +3030

    I love the part where he explains why it happens

    • Val A
      Val A Před 8 dny

      @Toby Bearman In vacuum. So, the shorter ladder will have less resistance, and that's why it will fall faster.

    • vid dumpie
      vid dumpie Před 13 dny

      The magic is the angle of the ladder steps. Look at the pivot impact and the tension and the length of string and it should add up why.

    • TandemRBLX
      TandemRBLX Před 13 dny +1

      @Alex bros mad the youtuber asked a question💀💀

    • Kris Netemeyer
      Kris Netemeyer Před 13 dny

      @srejuboyd hahah how orignal

    • srejuboyd
      srejuboyd Před 13 dny

      ​@Kris Netemeyer that joke went so far over your head that nasa could have attached a space probe to it for a free trip to pluto

  • Sven Wachsmuth
    Sven Wachsmuth Před 3 dny

    The one on the right has more air resistance because more parts are falling. At the ladder on the left the count of parts that are moving downwards against the air resistance decrease continuously after hitting the table. I suppose that each ladder rung has the same air resistance (force upwards).
    I suppose you need to repeat this experiment in a vacuum chamber.

  • JC Trumps
    JC Trumps Před 2 dny

    As each rung falls on the table there is less surface area which reduces air friction. It can go a little faster by each rung that hits the table. That's why towards the end the increase of speed is much greater because there are far fewer rungs slowing it down. The angled rung pulling one side has no effect because the force of gravity is constant whether in air or half falling on the table. Also mass has no effect on velocity only the force it hits the table.

  • Sami Powell
    Sami Powell Před 2 dny

    The zig zagging of the poles hitting the table, causes a tug down on the rope, each time. Pulling it down slightly faster.

  • Jojin Kang
    Jojin Kang Před 2 dny

    The one on the right is still affected by small amount of atmospheric friction. One on the left has less.

  • Tomas Casarotti
    Tomas Casarotti Před 15 dny +2911

    There is a slight "pull down" effect due to the angle at which the beams hit the surface, almost like a "leverage" effect. You can observe the additional tension transferred on the opposite side to the first side that impacts the surface. That extra energy transfer is enough to compile into a visible acceleration on the left ladder. Also, as more links impact the surface, if you focus on the further (up) beams, you can see the effect of the pull-down that I'm referring to. There are other observable events, such as the energy of the impact and the " force of the bounce" being transferred to the other ladder links.

    • Reef Sta
      Reef Sta Před 15 dny +1


    • Sicky Popp
      Sicky Popp Před 15 dny +1

      this is the reason

    • D K
      D K Před 15 dny +1

      More than just a slight effect. It’s significant.

    • Passing by.
      Passing by. Před 15 dny +1

      Tomas, you took the words out of my mouth!

    • Pedro Molinero
      Pedro Molinero Před 15 dny +1

      U dropped this king👑

  • Freshly Fried
    Freshly Fried Před 3 dny

    The shock force from the lower runs creating a secondary pulling force once the area contacts the table.

  • Real World Review
    Real World Review Před dnem

    I think the shock transfers back up pulling it down more. On the left side of the table one you can see it starts to go faster once it hits the table.

  • Anant Bhasu
    Anant Bhasu Před 5 dny

    The free falling ladder continued getting the same friction since the surface area exposed did not change. The one hitting the table suffered lesser friction due to its diminishing surface area.

  • V12
    V12 Před 3 dny

    The air resistance remains constant with the free fall ladder but reduces with the other ladder as each rung lands on the table.

  • YT775
    YT775 Před 17 dny +1719

    The angled ladder rungs are forced to rotate around their center of mass when one end hits the table, this minor rotation slightly pulls on the cord on the adjacent end. So in sum a slight downward force along the cords is applied.
    In conclusion this only works if the rungs are angled like this.

    • Bill Johnston
      Bill Johnston Před 15 dny

      @jpteknoman mechanical physics baffled me in school but nuclear physics I mastered so I’m unlikely to be correct in this situation. But if one was to increase the distances from inches to feet it stands reason that air resistance would likely have an effect that can be readily seen in such a demonstration. Please, someone explain why air resistance wouldn’t explain this phenomenon.

    • Alec Warda
      Alec Warda Před 16 dny +1

      @MrJeffrey938 likewise my friend

    • stinbray 11
      stinbray 11 Před 16 dny

      @Motorsport Creative ok? And y was this necessary. What does this add to society does it make u feel better about ur menial life

    • sloth-e
      sloth-e Před 17 dny

      @YT775 my pleasure. Translators are still very flawed for many languages. 👍

    • MrJeffrey938
      MrJeffrey938 Před 17 dny

      @Alec Warda Same here. Thanks for keeping me on my toes.

  • Manuel Gerstein
    Manuel Gerstein Před dnem

    The ladder's sticks hit the table on one side earlier and pull down their own other side, because the complete sticks keep most of their momentum

  • Thomas Anderson
    Thomas Anderson Před 2 dny

    Apart from the obvious solution, which is cheating, where each string connecting rungs in the left ladder on the left is just a tiny bit shorter than strings connecting rungs in the ladder on the right there exist a possible alternative explanation. It is called physics. My bet would be conservation of momentum. If you look very closely you will notice that rungs are not horizontal bit at an angle. As a rungs end closer to the surface hits the aforementioned surface it stops, but the rest of the rung would like to continue it's journey while obeying the law of conservation of momentum. As part of it's mass has stopped, the rest must accelerate and rotate around center of the mass. That makes the other end to speed up it's journey towards the center of the earth. But as this end of the rung is connected by a string to the rung end above, it has no other choice but to pull it down, there by accelerating it for a tiny bit. As each rung hits the surface it accelerates the ladder above more and more.

  • Will B
    Will B Před 2 dny

    The rebound inertia from the cord being attached to rungs that slightly tug on the incoming rungs. I suppose it's like a particle drive for fuelless space travel

  • spidergamer476
    spidergamer476 Před 2 dny

    I honestly think it's because when they are falling they start stacking onto eachother so they are closer to eachother

  • Alakazam
    Alakazam Před 20 dny +1326

    Ok I think I've got a solution. Since each rung of the ladder is angled, one side will hit before the other. Since we dont live in a perfectly absorbent world, the part of the ladder that hits first is going to want to bounce back up. This puts a slight rotational force around the center of the rung, pulling down the high side that has yet to hit the ground. This repeats for each rung in the ladder, slowly making it fall faster.

    • GoTaMa
      GoTaMa Před 17 dny

      @Alexandros Bertz The weight is falling on that bar.
      How do you think that a bar gain speed and force?

    • Alexandros Bertz
      Alexandros Bertz Před 17 dny

      yep, definetly the angle of the Bars adds torque to the strings acceletating the whole ladder down

    • Well Connor
      Well Connor Před 17 dny +1

      The ladder in the left had less air resistance because it hit the ground first

    • GoTaMa
      GoTaMa Před 18 dny

      I love your answer because it's logical but I have some doubts

    • Chrisee Gee-Man
      Chrisee Gee-Man Před 18 dny


  • w s
    w s Před dnem

    When steps hit the surface of the table and form a pile they create a downward pressure which is greater than the other ladder and hence come down faster

  • Hollul
    Hollul Před 3 dny

    I guess it's because of the arrangement of the wooden parts. When the first one hits the table, it bounces back and pulls on the shorter rope. So it pulls it down and gets more speed.

  • Kevin Sears
    Kevin Sears Před 2 dny

    essentially: the adder on the left side was PULLED down... because it had hit the table, you started to see the rods moving forwards and backwards... so it pulled the ladder to the side, and this caused the ladder to accelerate slightly, the one on the right never stopped freefalling, and was accelerating solely based on gravitational pull.

  • 0ned
    0ned Před 17 hodinami +1

    Microhelical tubules of force impart momentum. Kelvin's superfluid ether replaced Maxwell's stationary ether and Hermann Fricke's hydromechanical ether replaced Kelvin's superfluid ether. Any changes in acceleration result from changes in the ether.

  • Strike Raid
    Strike Raid Před 14 dny +266

    It's because the rungs are not level. When the tilted rung strikes the table, it tries to rotate about its center of gravity but the support wire resists that rotation and produces a downward pull on the support wire which accelerates the remaining assembly downwards.

    • loyly
      loyly Před 14 dny

      It's so obvious when you know the answer.

    • RX-Heaven
      RX-Heaven Před 14 dny

      Spot on. Pretty simple huh.

    • AcesPrune
      AcesPrune Před 14 dny +1

      This is called Recoil

    • Sean MegaByte
      Sean MegaByte Před 14 dny

      @AM THEBEAST94 Man this is why I flunked engineering, I genuinely had the thought "is it because it's hitting itself and creating downward momentum?" As if the thing could hit it's own lower rung and somehow transfer more energy to it.

    • reda
      reda Před 14 dny