Thursday, February 26, 2009

Clemson's Raymond Sykes: 60 Times More Powerful Than An Earthquake

Some guys at Clemson University have come up with this nifty little gadget (pictured) that can measure how powerful a dunk is. How does it work?:

The device uses a combination of two accelerometers, which measure acceleration, and the principles of basic physics to allow students to calculate within 15 seconds of the dunk how much energy was imparted to the basketball goal. Measurements appear on the video board almost immediately.
That's actually pretty cool, and I think these guys are going to earn themselves quite a bit of money with that toy. Don't you think it would be perfect for an NBA game? NBA Arenas are essentially entertainment venues at this point. Would it not fire up the fans if you saw a Dwight Howard dunk, then looked up to the scoreboard to see that it broke 100 g's?

Their biggest issue right now is how to make these numbers relevant. 100 g's? That does not mean anything to me. It gets even more confusing:
"Ray Sykes had a nasty dunk at the East Carolina University game," said Jonathan Cox, one of the students working on the project. "It peaked at a little over 30 g's, one of the highest recorded so far. That's awesome when you consider an earthquake's ground motion produces accelerations around point five and one g."
Right, so Ray Sykes can dunk 60 times more powerfully than an earth quake.

I think they forgot to carry the two.

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