Sunday, February 16, 2014

Science and engineering of the Olympics from the NSF

I took care of my promise to post more from Discovery News I made at the end of The physics of figure skating with More science of the Olympics from Discovery News.  Now it’s time to take care of the rest of that promise to post more from the National Science Foundation.  Follow over the jump for six, count them, six videos posted this past week.

Science of the Winter Olympic Games: Olympic Movement and Robotic Design

Professor Raffaello D'Andrea at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich, Switzerland, describes how control systems engineering is laying the groundwork for the design of more "athletic" robots.
Science of the Winter Olympic Games: Alpine Skiing and Vibration Damping

Kam Leang, a professor at the University of Nevada, Reno, and Tom Watson, of Watson Performance in Hood River, Ore., describe how advanced materials and engineering help reduce unwanted vibration, optimizing the performance of athletes.
Science of the Winter Olympic Games: Science of Snow

Snow is an essential part of the 2014 Olympics. How it's formed and how it reacts has been studied by scientists for centuries and continues to this day. Sarah Konrad, a former Winter Olympian who is also a glaciologist at the University of Wyoming, along with Cort Anastasio, a chemistry professor at the University of California, Davis, discuss how humidity and temperature help form snow.
Science of the Winter Olympic Games: Science of Ice

The science that makes ice slippery also makes the Olympic Winter Games possible. But exactly what makes ice slippery? Ken Golden, a mathematician at the University of Utah, explains how the unique surface of ice makes the slide and glide of winter sports possible.
This is one I could show to my students.

Science of the Winter Olympic Games: Engineering Competition Suits

At the 2014 Olympics, long track speed skater Shani Davis will be wearing what may be one of the most advanced competition suits ever engineered. Under Armour Innovation lab's Kevin Haley and polymer scientist and engineer Sarah Morgan, of the University of Southern Mississippi, explain how competition suits help improve athlete performance by reducing friction and improving aerodynamics.
Science of the Winter Olympic Games: Physics of Slope-Style Skiing

Slope-style skiing is a gravity defying freestyle skiing event debuting in Sochi. Nick Goepper, a 2013 world champion, will need to follow the laws of physics and rotational motion in order to nail his tricks in his quest for Olympic gold.

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