He came to kent state in 1975 and taught physics at all levels from introductory classes for nonscience majors to graduatelevel courses. In addition to the recreational pleasure sailing affords, it involves some interesting physics. Sep 29, 2010 according to the physics of sailing explained sheridan house inc, 2003, by kent state university physics professor bryon d. As you can see, the curve of the sail causes the air particles on the lee side to have a longer way to go than the ones on the windward side. Authoritative yet accessible, the physics of sailing explained is the perfect book for all those sailors who want to enhance their understanding and enjoyment of life at sea. The physics of sailing explained has been an extremely good source of material on the dynamics of sailboats. Here is the second video in our science of the olympics series. The next step in exploring the physics of sailing is to add a rudder to my simulation.
It turns out, for example, that downwind is not the fastest direction for sailing. It should enable cruisers and racers alike to grasp how sails, keels and hulls. Contrary to what you might expect, the physics of sailing still present some mysteries to modern sailors. However, in variable winds it is often better to bear away from the wind to increase speed at the expense of direction. Only after reading all of the comments here did i realize that there is a slight misuse of terms involved. Oct 01, 2003 the physics of sailing explained by bryon anderson attempts to answer some of these questions. To flow around the sails, the wind has to deviate in direction, as shown by the arrows for initial velocity v i and final velocity v f, which are given with respect to the boat.
Sailing starts with the force of the wind on the sails. Physics of sailing educator guide kqed public media. Anderson outlines the science behind sailing in a way that anyone can understand and benefit from without having to trudge through a physics text or became a naval architect. Wilson jila and department of physics, university of colorado, boulder, colorado 803090440, usa dated. Analyzing that interaction yields some results not commonly known to nonsailors. In mediterranean countries, yachts will mostly be docked with their back part to the shore or peer. In physics, buoyancy is described as a force exerted by a liquid, gas, or other fluid that opposes an objects weight. Why are eighteen foot skiffs always sailing upwind. It is, however, intended as a basic primer for those interested in gaining a better understanding of the fundamental principles of sailing, and therefore a better appreciation of the sport as a whole. The following is an overview of these physics concepts in terms that can be easily understood by someone with a basic grounding in physics. Pdf the physics of sailing explained download full pdf. Concepts are conveyed simply, concisely, and with many examples and illustrations.
In section ii, the forces that act on a sailing yacht are introduced and discussed. Problem understanding basic sail mechanics stack exchange. The keel behaves like an underwater wing and the same basic physics applies, as explained above for the sail. A sailing vessel is said to be beating to windwards when sailing against the wind be it at an angle to the wind direction. The physics of sailing explained anderson, bryon d. So lets start with those basic parts of the sailing yacht. He is olso on ovocotionol soilor who lecfures ond wrifes obout the intersection behyeen physics ond soiling. When doing this the sails deccelerate the wind, the wind accelerates the sails, and the sails push the boat forward. Newtons laws, vector subtraction, archimedes principle and others.
An introduction to the physics of sailing mit blossoms. Northern california has a storied, 500year history of sailing. Normally, when sailing to windward one picks a sailing direction which maximizes the boats progress in the direction of the wind. Its probably quite straight forward how a boat can sail in the same direction of the wind. May 12, 2015 the sun is out, the wind is blowing, and ive been busy taking some sailing lessons. Anderson, the physics of sailing explained, sheridan house, dobbs ferry, ny 2003. It is worth noting that bernoullis principle and the kuttajukowski theorem are completely consistent with one another in explaining the phenomenon of lift. The physics of sailing is a useful book for anyone who wants to enhance their understanding and enjoyment of sailing.
An introduction to the physics of sailing share my lesson. Bryon anderson is on experimentol nucleor physicist ond,choirmon of the physics deportment ot kent slote university in kent, ohio. Take the number that you got for you latitude using the techniques explained above. Anderson physics professor anderson is emeritus professor in the department of physics. How to explain the physics of tacking sailing to windward. Download pdf the physics of sailing explained book full free. Bryon d anderson the physics of sailing is a useful book for anyone who wants to enhance their understanding and enjoyment of sailing. Anderson, the physics of sailing explained, sheridan house, dobbs. Authoritative yet accessible, the physics of sailing explained is the perfect work for those sailors who want to enhance their understanding and enjoyment of life at sea.
Next time i go sailing in the boston harbor, ill take a closer look at the sailboats available at courageous sailing center. You can just do the math the way that the previous video clip explained. According to bernoullis principle this difference in speed creates a difference in pressure, the top side our leeward side having less pressure and the underside our upwind side having more. There are other elements of physics at play when launching a boat. He is also on avocational sailor who lectures and writes about the intersection between physics and soiling. The physics of sailing arises from a balance of forces between the wind powering the sailing craft as it passes over its sails and the resistance by the sailing craft against being blown off course, which is provided in the water by the keel, rudder, underwater foils and other elements of the underbody of a sailboat, on ice by the runners of an ice boat, or on land by the wheels of a sail. Sailing close to the wind uses the shape of the sails to generate lift. If you want to know how to windsurf properly it is essential to know how a windsurfing sail works. A thin little book at fewer than 150 pages, the physics of sailing explained is not intended for physicists or for yacht and sail designers. The physics of sailing explained bryon d anderson haftad. The physics of sailing explained by bryon anderson attempts to answer some of these questions. How does turbulence affect a yachts movement through water. The main parts of the sails that are important to remember are the head, the tack, the foot, the leech and the clew.
Heald, physics of waves, dover, new york 1969, chap. Understanding the physics that makes a boat sail is something i find extremely important to being a good sailor as without this knowledge you are missing key concepts which are vital to being able to sail properly. The goal of this lesson is to explain how sailboats work by exploring basic. What exactly is the lift of a sailboat as explained by bernoulli principle. The rope is threaded through the pulleys to provide mechanical advantage that amplifies the force applied to the rope. When sailing upwind, the relative speed of the wind on the sails is greater than the actual speed of the wind and this relative wind creates a larger. But despite this rich heritage, scientists and boat designers continue to learn more. The following is an overview of these physics concepts in terms that can be easily. Authoritative yet accessible, this work will enable readers to better grasp how sails, keels and hulls work together to keep sailboats movingand will sharpen. It will enable cruisers and racers alike to better grasp how sails, keels, and hulls work together to keep boats afloat, and will sharpen their skills with a more subtle. Read about the physics of lift and see illustrations of the physical laws at work. The goal of this lesson is to explain how sailboats work by exploring basic physics principles. To enjoy yourself on a sailboat, you need to know the basic sailing maneuvers, sail positions, and rules of the waterway for when you encounter other vessels.
The physics of sailing university of colorado boulder. For example, the engine of your vehicle has to generate the right amount of torque to go up the boat ramp. Sep 30, 2008 northern california has a storied, 500year history of sailing. Download the physics of sailing explained97807668865. Introducing stem sailing best practices this site, sponsored by the national sailing hall of fame, introduces two handson activities students can do to study the science of sailing. Demystifying the physics of sailing the purpose of these courses is for the curious sailor to understand what is happening outside and inside a sailboat, why sailboats are designed that way, how sailboats work, and how to sail them better. You can also use a combination of physics and trigonometry to figure out the ideal slope for a boat ramp. But despite this rich heritage, scientists and boat designers continue to learn more each day about what makes a sail boat move.
The physics of sailing explained available for download and read online in other formats. This creates a resultant force on the sails, denoted by f sails, which points in the direction shown. Ive also been following this explanation which seemed to be helping but i am still confused. Analysis of lift the figure below shows the general case where the wind v w is blowing at an angle. This site is all about the physics of sailing, though it focuses less on the stereotypical fluid dynamics of sails and more on the different types of ships and how the physics is slightly altered for each.
One to extract energy from and the other to resist, creating a force vector which propels the vehicle. The pictures give an exaggerated and oversimplified example. Sails and keels, like airplane wings, exploit bernoullis principle. A block and tackle or only tackle is a system of two or more pulleys with a rope or cable threaded between them, usually used to lift heavy loads the pulleys are assembled to form blocks and then blocks are paired so that one is fixed and one moves with the load. How to explain the physics of tacking sailing to windward, i. He was planetarium director at kent state university from 1979 to 1996, was assistant chair much of the time from 1996 to 2007 and chair from. Anderson, this force from the sails foil shape is combined with and. According to the physics of sailing explained sheridan house inc, 2003, by kent state university physics professor bryon d. The project focuses on the application of newtons laws in sailboat design. Clarke in the short story sunjammer the wind from the sun in may 1964 5. Thus, the physics of sailing involves the interaction of the wind and sails, and the interaction of the water and keel. Motion is determined by force, and the forces on a sailing yacht depend on the interactions of the hull and.
It should enable cruisers and racers alike to grasp how sails, keels and hulls work together to keep boats afloat. This episode of dragonfly tv investigates the speed of sailing. Land sailing, ice sailing, yacht sailing all depend on harn. Sail away pdf from the tryengineering website, here you will find a lesson on the science of sailing that can be adapted and used with students from 818. Sailing can provide adventure, relaxation, recreation, and just good old fun. Turns out theres an interesting bit of physics that allows sailboats to not only travel downwind, being pushed by the wind, but also to travel upwind, or nearly so. But boats can sail at say 40 to the wind and, by tacking alternate lines on either side of the wind direction they can go where they like.
This support page from physclips askshow can a boat sail upwind. The sun is out, the wind is blowing, and ive been busy taking some sailing lessons. The physics of sailing, a cfd analysis comsol blog. When approaching a sailing yacht, you will notice its basic shapes and curves, front and back, a big pole in the middle, etc. An introduction to the physics of sailing lesson plan template and teaching resources. The change of velocity dv is in the direction shown. Andersory the physics of sailing explained, sheridan house. The physics of lift the physics of lift has a lot to do with how sailboats move. We introduce the physics of sailing to answer these and some other questions.
Is it true that some yachts can sail faster upwind than downwind. Welcome to the physics of sailing project, a sixweek high school physics project designed in a projectbased learning pbl format. The physics of sailing this is an excellent video on sailing produced by kqed in san francisco. The physics of sailing depend on operating at the boundary of two dissimilar medium. I have raced sailboats and now teach a course on game math and dynamics. The national aeronautics and space administration nasa used sailing techniques to extend the operational life of the mariner 10 spacecraft in 19741975. What makes a sail boat moves can in the simplest terms be broken down into two sets of forces, the centre of effort ce and the centre of lateral resistance clr. The sections on the keel as a symmetic wing and airflow for twosail combinations sloops are especially good.1229 358 550 707 242 1102 1523 619 404 1197 981 999 1279 1059 1508 1105 423 1235 1338 1020 99 595 377 192 161 243 654 1126 522 905 281 510 983 209