Science of the Winter Olympic Games: Alpine Skiing and Vibration Damping

Alpine skiers have engineers looking out for their safety and for their performance. Physics and materials engineers consider how to dampen the vibrations that can be caused by bumps in the snow, vibrations that can cause the athletes to lose time, or worse, lose control. They use nanomaterials and shock absorption to improve strength, flexibility, and stability of moving parts, taking a scientific perspective on the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics. The awe-inspiring combination of sports and science will foster a winning spirit in your engineering or physics pupils. Consider showing the clip before assigning a project to meet NGSS engineering standards for middle school.

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CCSS: Adaptable
NGSS: Adaptable
Concepts

Pros

  • Can be used to support Next Generation Science Standards
  • Exciting and innovative technology combined with a high-speed sport will captivate viewers
  • Focus on the Sochi Winter Olympics from a scientific perspective
Cons

  • None
Common Core

NGSS