Saturday, April 27, 2013
The Physics of Fred Flintstone’s Flaming Feet
By Kyle Hill
I hope that the father of the “modern Stone Age family” has thick skin, or else he is going to lose his legs.
Let’s put aside the fact that Fred Flintstone basicallyruns to work and therefore doesn’t really need his wheels (or that he would need the quads of a god to get them moving). What is much more interesting is the way he stops his caveman car. With heels screeching and smoking, Fred famously uses his own feet to stop his forward momentum. Much like how your car’s brake pads work, Fred’s feet absorb all the frictional forces until the stones stop rolling.
But just how much force would his feet need to apply, and what would happen to them?