Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 78.djvu/196

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192
THE POPULAR SCIENCE MONTHLY.

one per cent, of the atmospheric pressure to produce a force on the ball greater than its weight. The ball leaves the club in a good drive with a velocity sufficient to produce far greater pressures than this. The consequence is that when the ball starts from the tee spinning in the direction shown in Fig. 14, this is often PSM V78 D196 Effect of underspin after tee off.pngFig. 14. called underspin, the upward force due to the spin is greater than its weight, thus the resultant force is upwards, and the ball is repelled from the earth instead of being attracted to it. The consequence is that the path of the ball curves upward, as in the curve A, instead of downwards, as in B, which would be its path if it had no spin. The spinning golf ball is in fact a very efficient heavier than air flying machine, the lifting force may be many times the weight of the ball.

The path of the golf ball takes very many interesting forms as the amount of spin changes. We can trace all these changes in the arrangement which I have here, and which I might call an electric golf links. With this apparatus I can subject small particles to forces of exactly the same type as those which act on a spinning golf ball.

PSM V78 D196 Effect of gravity on electrons flowing in a magnetic field.png
Fig. 15.

These particles start from what may be called the tee A (Fig. 15). This is a red hot piece of platinum with a spot of barium oxide upon it, the platinum is connected with an electric battery which causes negatively electrified particles to fly off the barium and travel down the glass tube in which the platinum strip is contained; nearly all the air has been exhausted from this tube. These particles are luminous, so that the path they take is very easily observed. We have now got our golf balls off from the tee, we must now introduce a vertical force to act upon them to correspond to the force of gravity on the golf ball. This is easily done by the horizontal plates BC, which are electrified by connecting them with an electric battery; the upper one is electrified negatively, hence when one of these particles moves between the plates it is exposed to a constant downwards force, quite analogous to the weight of the ball. You see now when the particles pass between the plates their path has the shape shown in Fig. 16;