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*Centripetal
Acceleration*

When an object moves in a circle, its velocity changes. This means it has an
acceleration. This acceleration is directed toward the center of the circle
and is called the centripetal acceleration. There must be a centripetal force
to produce this centripetal acceleration.

The **net force** on an object moving in a circle provides this **centripetal
force** and is directed** toward the center** of the circle.

( Think of the icy roads in the winter. With ice on the roads there may **not**
be a sufficient net force available to provide this centripetal force so a car
may **not** be able to make a curve and may go off he road. )

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(C) 2003, Doug Davis; all rights reserved