NEW VIBRATIONS IN BASEBALL, GOLF AND CRICKET EQUIPMENT
Studying the sounds and vibrations of sports equipment helps designers improve their products, enabling athletes to reach new, higher levels of performance. It also can dispel longstanding misconceptions in sports. New research suggests that the spot on a baseball bat that feels the best to a hitter (i.e., transmits the least vibration to the hands) may not really be the spot that can send the ball the farthest distance. Dan Russell of Kettering University in Michigan (firstname.lastname@example.org) will present surprising new discoveries on the baseball bat's "sweet spot," conventionally defined as a region, approximately 5 to 7 inches from the "barrel" end, where the bat exhibits the least vibration and gives the ball maximum propulsion. Robert Collier of Dartmouth College (Robert.email@example.com) will present newly detailed studies on how the different kinds of vibrations in a baseball bat--from the "crack" to the "thunk"--can provide important acoustic cues to baseball players in the field.
In a quest to design a better bat for the sport of cricket, highly popular in countries such as England, Australia, and India, Sabu John and colleagues at RMIT University in Australia (firstname.lastname@example.org) are taking advantage of the open-ended nature of cricket rules, which place no restrictions on the bat handle's shape or material composition. Exploiting their knowledge of mechanical vibrations, the researchers will present tests of various shapes and materials for the bat handle. Exploring the world of different vibrations that exist in golf balls and various parts of the golf club, Tom Mase of Michigan State University (email@example.com) will show, for example, how varying the stiffness pr
Contact: Ben Stein
American Institute of Physics