Design for winners

Design for winners - Design While debate rages about...

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Design While debate rages about acceptable limits to sports technology, manufacturers are pushing on with ever more inventive simulation solutions. Charles Clarke reports THE Speedo LZR Racer Swimsuit, designed with Ansys Fluent CFD software with a little help from NASA, is not only creating a stir in competitive swimming but has also ignited a fierce debate about how much is too much technology in sport. Arguments rage in F1 that the team with the most money to throw technology at the sport usually ends up on top. But in swimming the discussion involves ethics and whether it is right, in a field that usually pits people against the elements unaided by technology, for elite athletes with plenty of sponsorship money to claim world records against others not sporting the latest hi-tech swimwear. The LZR suit has been worn for 18 of the 19 world records set since its introduction in February. And since its use has been blessed by swimming's governing body, the International Swimming Federation (FINA), it has already spawned copycat suits and a possible return to disputes such as the 'sport shoe wars'. Here the fierce competition for market share among athletic shoe makers and innovation by other companies, such as Reebok and Adidas, has kept pace with Nike and allowed runners to have a more or less a level playing field. In response to the LZR and the FINA ruling, Arena International has launched a prototype super suit, complete with plastic inserts and other clever additions. 'A new era in the sport kicks off today,' said Christiano Portas, the head of Arena. 'We can fight for ethics but we stood alone when it came to everyone saying that the word "fabric" in the rules was just a generic term. Now we explore many other things.' This is in stark contrast with objections to Oscar Pistorius, the South African double amputee, who has set 100m, 200m and 400m Paralympics world records, running in the regular Olympics. Pistorius uses the Cheetah Flex-Foot, a
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This note was uploaded on 09/28/2009 for the course WRT 102 taught by Professor Frost during the Spring '08 term at SUNY Stony Brook.

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Design for winners - Design While debate rages about...

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