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The Science Of Spin: Spin On Baseball

1042 words - 5 pages

The direction of baseballs after they are thrown is caused by spin on the ball. Spin is defined as rotations around the axis of the baseball. Major league pitchers have clocked the spin on their pitches at 1500rpm so when a baseball is spinning through the air the threads on the ball cause a self-made “air pocket” that causes changes in direction. This is known as the Magnus affect.
The spin on a baseball is defined as a vector that points on the axis’s rotation. And the magnitude of this spin vector is the number of revolutions per/sec, this is known as an angular velocity vector (Horney, A., Lowry, T., Schwenker, E., & wray, E. (2008). A New spin on baseball. Electronic Proceedings of ...view middle of the document...

That is an 18.94 difference in rev/ sec and that shows that curveballs don’t spin as fast as a fastball, but because of the direction of spin causes changes in direction (Horney, A., Lowry, T., Schwenker, E., & wray, E. (2008). A New spin on baseball. Electronic Proceedings of Undergraduate Mathematics, 3(4)).
When a baseball is thrown or hit, the resulting motion of the ball is determined by Newton's laws of motion. From Newton's first law, we know that the moving ball will stay in motion in a straight line unless acted on by external forces. A force may be thought of as a push or pull in a specific direction. There are three outside forces that affect the ball these are lift, drag, and weight.
Weight is a force that is always directed toward the center of the earth. In general, the magnitude of the weight depends on the mass of an object as determined by Newton's law of gravitation. By rule, the weight of a major league baseball is 5 ounces. A baseball is made with a solid core, a string wrapping around the core, and a stitched covering, so the weight is distributed throughout the ball. And creates a center of gravity But we can often think of the weight as collected and acting through a single point called the center of gravity. The center of gravity is the average location of the weight of an object. (http://www.grc.nasa.gov/WWW/k-12/airplane/ballforce.html) the weight is important for the spin of the ball because it helps curve balls sink and creates the center of mass for the axis for the ball to spin around.
As the ball moves through the air, the air resists the motion of the ball and the resistance force is called drag. Drag is directed along and opposed to the flight direction. In general, there

Are many factors that affect the magnitude of the drag force including the shape and size of the object, the amount of the velocity of...

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