American Journal of Physics -- July 2001 -- Volume 69, Issue 7 pp. 755-768

On the dynamic stabilization of an inverted pendulum

Eugene I. Butikov
St. Petersburg State University, St. Petersburg, Russia

(Received 21 June 2000; accepted 19 January 2001)

A simple qualitative physical explanation is suggested for the phenomenon of dynamic stabilization of the inverted rigid planar pendulum whose pivot is constrained to oscillate with a high frequency in the vertical direction. A quantitative theory based on the suggested approach is developed. A computer program simulating the physical system supports the analytical investigation. The simulation reveals subtle details of the motion and aids the analytical study of the subject in a manner that is mutually reinforcing.

2001 American Association of Physics Teachers.

DOI: 10.1119/1.1365403
PACS: 01.50.-i, 45.40.Cc

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