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Baseball pitches

Curve Ball Lab - MATH 273

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Math 273 ? Lab 1 ? F 07 Curve Balls and Vectors Does a baseball pitch really curve or is it some sort of optical illusion? Assume the pitcher's mound is at the point (60, 0, 0) and that home plate is at the origin of our coordinate system. Suppose the pitcher throws the ball toward home plate and gives it a spin of s revolutions per second about a vertical axis through the center of the ball. This spin is described by the spin vector s where s points along the axis of revolution with length s. From aerodynamics we learn that this spin causes a difference in air pressure on the sides of the ball and results in a spin acceleration on the ball given by , where c is some empirical constant and is the velocity vector. The total acceleration of the ball is then ,
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