Science of Cool Stuff

Science of Surfing

Probably the most memorable of all of the ‘science of’ series. 


Surfing offers a brilliant opportunity to explore for different levels of complexity:

Waves – The wave equation, velocity, wavelength etc. Why do they come in sets?

Heat transfer – Wetsuit design and why does water feel colder even if it is the same temperature as the air?

Forces – What forces are acting. Do you weigh less when you are in the water?

Centre of mass – What is it, where is it and how does it relate to surfing? Do females or males have a higher centre of mass?

Impulse – What is it? Why do you have to paddle to catch a wave?

Beach safety – What is the science behind beach safety What is a rip current and what do you do if caught in one ?(80% of children rescued at sea were swept out by rips and hardly anyone knows about them)


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