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Archimedes

Essay by   •  January 18, 2011  •  Term Paper  •  748 Words (3 Pages)  •  919 Views

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Archimedes was one of the greatest philosophers who lived from 287 BC to 211 BC in Syracuse. Archimedes was a physicist, astronomer, engineer and mathematician who discovered and invented machines such as the Archimedean screw, Archimedes principle, Archimedean spiral, Archimedes claw, planetarium, compound pulley system and many war machines. His greatest contributions were in geometry and his methods and ideas started the idea of calculus and finding the density of an object without damaging the object.

Archimedes was asked by a king, one day to find out if his crown was made out of pure gold without damaging it. Before Archimedes came up with the concept of the Archimedes principle, the only way to find out if things were made out of pure gold was they would have to melt the item. To figure if the crown was made of pure gold Archimedes used the Archimedes’s principle. Archimedes’s principle states that a body immersed in a fluid experiences a buoyant force equal to the weight of the displaced fluid.

The Archimedes screw was a machine with a revolving screw shaped blade inside a cylinder which would pump water threw it. The Archimedes screw was created when Archimedes was studying in Egypt and is still used today in Egypt. The Archimedean screw helped the Egyptians pump water out of rivers and helped pump water back into the ocean when hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans. Another weapon made by Archimedes was the claw that was a crane like arm with a hook that would drop on an attacking ship, swing upwards lifting the ship out of the water and possibly even sinking the ship. Machines of war created by Archimedes helped Syracuse defeat the attack of Roman fleets. The catapults, levers, and pulleys were also created to help defeat the Romans when they tried to attack Syracuse.

Archimedes early advances in mathematics included the first known outline of infinite series which is still used today. Archimedes determined that the area of a circle was equaled to pi and he determined that the value of pi lied around 3-1/7 (3.1429) as well as 3-10/71 (3.1408). Archimedes figured this out by etching and defining a six sided polygon. With his work on the areas of plane figures, the area of curved surfaces and the volume of curved surfaces, his methods advanced mathematics Archimedes was not content with using myriad (10,000) as the Romans highest numeral, so he decided to perform an experiment using large numbers. His problem was how many grains of sand are in the universe? He created a system to count the number of grains of sand and while solving this problem he discovered powers. The conclusion to Archimedes problem was one time ten to the sixty-two powers (1x1062).

Archimedean Spiral is the locus points corresponding to the locations over time of a point moving away from a fixed point with a constant speed along a line which rotates with constant angular velocity

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