Gustav Magnus explained the Magnus force for the first time in 1853. The Magnus effect is commonly used to explain the often mysterious and commonly observed movements of spinning balls in sports like soccer, baseball tennis, table tennis, volleyball, golf and cricket. Also this force is considered in the external ballistic theory with applications in (bullets flight, paintball and BB guns).
How does the Magnus Effect work?
Do you remember the boundary layer described in
The Baseball Flight ?
As the spinning ball moves through the air it will create a pressure difference between its two sides according the
effect. The interaction between the air layer on the side of the ball that rotates in the opposite direction of the ball movement and the surrounding air creates a low-pressure area. This will “suck” the ball and curve its trajectory.
Watch this funny video and learn how the Magnus force can alter the flight of a toilet paper tube.