Lariat chain

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A lariat chain at the Museu de la Ciencia (science museum), in Barcelona, Spain.

A Lariat chain is a loop of chain that hangs off, and is spun by a wheel. It is often used as a science exhibit or a toy.

The original Lariat Chain was created in 1986 by Norman Tuck, as an Artist-in-Residence project[1] at the Exploratorium in San Francisco.

Lariat Chain was developed from an earlier Tuck piece entitled Chain Reaction (1984). Chain Reaction was hand cranked, and utilized a heavy chain attached by magnets onto an iron flywheel. As in Lariat Chain, Chain Reaction used a brush to disrupt the motion of the traveling chain.

The speed of the chain is arranged to equal the wave speed of transverse waves,[2] so that waves moving against the motion of the chain appear to be standing still.[3][4]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Exhibit Cross Reference - Lariat Chain". Retrieved 2014-03-17. 
  2. ^ "Transverse and Longitudinal Waves". Retrieved 2016-02-13. 
  3. ^ Exploratorium Archived 2008-10-05 at the Wayback Machine.
  4. ^

External links[edit]