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Physics in Sport - Billiards, Pool or 8 Ball are the names given to this game

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Billiards, Pool or 8 Ball are the names given to this game. For many of us 8 Ball is a game that we play at friends’ place or at pool houses, pubs and a good many other places. But when you are playing 8 Ball you would never really think about physics would you? But it is there, and it is in play everytime the cue hits the ball to make it curve, everytime you jump the ball over another or bounce it around the cushioned sides to get the white ball to connect with one of your own. This connection is also a matter of physics, the angles that you hit the balls into the pockets at, the speeds that the balls travel at and of course the ever embarrassing ball bouncing around the table without hitting a ball at all. Why does the white ball slow down? Why didn’t that ball go in the pocket? Why did that ball hit the back of the pocket and pop back out? These questions are all related to physics and will be discussed throughout this investigation as well as many others revolving around differences in equipment and other interesting facts.

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After the cue has collided with the white ball that ball must travel in a straight line along the felt table to get to the point that it was intended to reach. The ball cannot curve when it is on this path after being hit because the force has been sent through the ball at a particular angle and this is the direction that the ball travels in. The law applied in this particular part of the shot is the law of Conservation on Energy because even though the ball is slowly losing speed due to the external forces acting on the energy of the ball, the energy is still there it is just being moved to the table as it travels over its surface.

Seeing as the player has aimed the ball on an angle at the cushion to get around to his/her ball we must discuss what happens when the balls is in contact with and after the cushion. The ball is traveling towards to cushion at an angle and seeing as the ball is a completely solid object it isn’t going to deform at all when it hits the cushioning. The cushioning

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In the sport of 8 Ball Newton’s Law as well as the Conservation of Energy and Conservation of Momentum Laws are in use nearly everytime you have a shot which I actually found surprising. There are many differences in ideas to do with physics and billiards ranging from people that try and work out the effects of different types of felt to different cue tips. The external influences don’t really play that big part in physics as it is more the collisions between the balls that slows them down, the main external influence was the cushioning which slows the ball a little. Air shots are not really used in pool as it is not good for the cue tip, dangerous to the table and very difficult to control, but there are many techniques and strategies used by pool players proving that 8 Ball is also a game of strategy as well as aim.



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