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Tennis and the slippy clay blues

In the epic 2011 US Open Final, Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal mesmerised tennis fans by sliding on hard court surfaces, a technique that had, for the most part, been reserved solely for clay courts. In this year’s tournament Djokovic appeared to have mastered the technique as he slid effortlessly into the final, only to […]

Top 5 olympic sports that have been influenced by technology: NO 2

Number 2: Tennis – Hawkeye assistant official In second place is tennis – although not the technological influence that may first spring to mind. Normally when referring to technological advances in tennis, racket design is the first on the list. Improvements in materials allowed the rackets to become lighter, stiffer and provide a larger hitting […]

Professor Haake and the Royal Institution

Professor Haake has been working with the Royal Institution over the past few months to create a series of impressive videos exploring the world of technology in sport. They are available to view on the website but I’ve also embedded the videos below so you can view them on our blog too. Take a look […]

Rafa’s racket: a weighty issue

At first glance, the spectacular conclusion of the men’s singles competition at the Australian Open may seem to suggest that Rafael Nadal is still clueless when it comes to playing the tireless Novak Djokovic. However, there is a difference to Nadal’s game this year compared to last. Nadal, former world number one, surrendered 6 defeats […]

Balls behaving badly

It may seem like I have balls on the brain if my last couple of posts are any indication. Balls are such a big part of sport and Sports Engineers are fascinated by the way they behave as they bounce on the ground and fly through the air. I’ve seen two amazing videos recently which exhibit […]

Revenge of the spaghetti strings?

Many tennis commentators decry the demise of the wooden racket, with a smaller head and less forgiving nature, it demanded a more considered and poised form of play. While it is unlikely that a current professional, raised on cutting-edge carbon fibre rackets would revert to lumber, there is an outlawed stringing method which could have […]

Leipzig: meat, no vegetables and Sports Engineering

On the 18-20th November, Leipzig (Figure 1) in East Germany played host to the ANSYS Conference & 27th CADFEM Users´ Meeting. John Hart and Tom Allen from the Sports Engineering Research Group were in attendance, leaving behind cold wet Sheffield in exchange for cold wet Leipzig. ANSYS produce Finite Element (FE) and Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) software. FE […]