Lagrangian Reduction and the Double Spherical Pendulum

Marsden, J. E., and J. Scheurle

Dedicated to Klaus Kirchgässner for his 60th Birthday
ZAMP 44, 17-43.


This paper studies the stability and bifurcations of the relative equilibria of the double spherical pendulum, which has the circle as its symmetry group. This example as well as others with nonabelian symmetry groups, such as the rigid body, illustrate some useful general theory about Lagrangian reduction. In particular, we establish a satisfactory global theory of Lagrangian reduction that is consistent with the classical local Routh theory for systems with an abelian symmetry group.