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Relativistic Baseball

Discussion in 'Off-topic Zone' started by Sam I Am, Jul 16, 2012.

  1. Sam I Am

    Sam I Am Unfriendly and Aloof!

    37,402 Messages
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    This is all kinds of awesome. It is a new segment created by xkcd.com called What-If. Go check it out with the link below.


    Let’s set aside the question of how we got the baseball moving that fast. We'll suppose it's a normal pitch, except in the instant the pitcher releases the ball, it magically accelerates to 0.9c. From that point onward, everything proceeds according to normal physics.:


    The answer turns out to be “a lot of things”, and they all happen very quickly, and it doesn’t end well for the batter (or the pitcher). I sat down with some physics books, a Nolan Ryan action figure, and a bunch of videotapes of nuclear tests and tried to sort it all out. What follows is my best guess at a nanosecond-by-nanosecond portrait:

    Complete Article
  2. Phoenix

    Phoenix Well-Known Member

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    yeah I saw this last week - awesomeness :D
  3. wittenacious

    wittenacious Active Member

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    Postulating: So bat speed could conceivably increase — proportionately — as well? Talk about breaking bats now. Man!

    And, if possible, perhaps the batter wouldn't be so unsuspecting...


    I guess the tough thing would be knowing when to swing and "crack" your wrists through impact, though. And hand-eye coordination... "Fuhgeddaboutit!"

    And the poor catcher... what sorta gear would he need to even hope to contain pitching like that?!

    My mind is duly boggled.

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