1817 – gyroscope

A gyroscope is a device that can maintain a directional orientation because it is spinning rapidly and the axis of the spin resists being changed. A spinning top is a simple example. The first known gyroscope was documented by Johann Bohnenberger in 1817. In 1851 Leon Foucault demonstrated the Foucault pendulum and in 1852, coined the term, “gyroscope”. Modern advanced gyroscopes often use a vibrating structure that is very small and operates in similar fashion to a Foucault pendulum. Micro-Electro-Mechanical Systems (MEMS) are devices just larger than nano-scale. MEMS gyroscopes are very small, cheap, and use small resonators similar to tuning forks or vibrating wheels or planes.

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