Have you ever wondered how a football player puts a goal bending the ball around a five-person wall? What is Magnus Effect?
Well, the answer is Magnus’ Effect. Curving the ball in the air is not as easy as it looks. There are some physics concepts that make it possible. Magnus effect occurs on spinning objects that are spherical or cylindrical. The effect that we can observe is that the moving spinning object bends away from the intended direction of travel.
The spin of the object alters the airflow around the body and by the conservation of momentum causes the Magnus effect. The effect is named after the German physicist Heinrich Gustav Magnus, who described the effect in 1852. Other scientists like Sir Issac Newton have explained this effect before Magnus, but it was Magnus who got honored.
The Magnus effect is mainly applied in games like football, golf, cricket, tennis, baseball, and many more. This concept is important in understanding the physics behind many ball sports. Some aircraft have been built that use the Magnus effect to lift using a rotating cylinder at the front of a wing, this allows the flight at lower horizontal speeds.
It is used in external ballistics. The combined sideways wind component of the wind causes a Magnus force to act on the bullet.
The German physicist Heinrich Gustav Magnus described the effect in 1852. However, in 1672, Isaac Newton had described it and correctly inferred the cause after observing tennis players in his Cambridge college. In 1742, Benjamin Robins, a British mathematician, ballistics researcher, and military engineer, explained deviations in the trajectories of musket balls in terms of the Magnus effect.
Some aircraft have been built to use the Magnus effect to create lift with a rotating cylinder instead of a wing, allowing flight at lower horizontal speeds. The earliest attempt to use the Magnus effect for a heavier-than-air aircraft was in 1910 by a US member of Congress, Butler Ames of Massachusetts. The next attempt was in the early 1930s by three inventors in New York state.