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Scientists Dropped A Basketball Off Of A Dam – The Result Was Surprisingly Awesome


Veritasium and his science-loving friends dropped a basketball from the top of the tallest dam in the world to answer the simple question, how far would a basketball with backspin go? As soon as they threw the ball they witnessed a true powers of science, in this case about the Magnus Effect. Watch their experiment below, and learn more about the Magnus Effect.

Read this if you’re interested in physics.
The biggest misconception about the Magnus Effect is that it is just a consequence of Bernoulli’s principle. It’s simply not. This can be demonstrated by varying the surface roughness of the ball. Smooth balls can actually curve in the opposite direction due to the ‘reverse Magnus effect’ because flow over one side is laminar while the other is turbulent. This is a great reference on the shortcomings of Bernoulli’s principle explanations.

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