Speculations in Support of the Egyptian and Chinese Traditions that in Remote Ages the Sun Rose in the West
The basic principle operating gyroscopic compasses seems not put into operation in its greatest simplicity. The principal manufacturers all constrain their axes to the horizontal plane. Constraint introduces precessional tendencies, requiring complicated and expensive compensations and adjustments. From this the natural inference is that the principle is not wholly understood by the manufacturers. The purpose of this article is to explain the principle and to show its applications to other things.
First, the principle, the Law of Satellites. Any body, given rotation about an axis through its center of gravity (making it a gyroscope) and revolution about some other axis(making it a satellite), will seek, as a position of stability, its axis of rotation perpendicular to its plane of revolution, with rotation and revolution in the same direction.