Parallel and perpendicular axes theorems
These two theorems may be useful in considering problems on moments of inertia.
Parallel axes theorem
The moment of inertia
of a body about any axis is equal to the moment of inertia
about a parallel
axis through the centre of gravity of the body plus Mb
, where M is
the mass of the body and b is the distance between the two axes. (See Figure 1)
(b) Perpendicular axes theorem
For any plane body (e.g. a rectangular sheet of metal) the moment of inertia
any axis perpendicular to the plane is equal to the sum of the moments of inertia
about any two perpendicular axes in the plane of the body which intersect the first
axis in the plane.
This theorem is most useful when considering a body which is of
(symmetrical) about two out of the three axes. If the moment of inertia about these
axes is known then that about the third axis may be calculated.