(click for a larger image)
top: upward thrust of buoyancy (B ) and downward thrust of gravity (G ) allow a stable ship to right itself when heeledbottom: with a metacenter (M ) below gravity, forces of gravity and buoyancy are further apart and will cause an unstable ship to capsize when heeled
met·a·cen·ter (mt-sntr) KEY
- The intersection of vertical lines through the center of buoyancy of a floating body when it is at equilibrium and when it is floating at an angle. The location of the metacenter is an indication of the stability of a floating body.