I enjoyed another intellectually stimulating day here in Lowell, Massachusetts. Bruce Jahnke gave an interesting keynote address in the morning that discussed new technologies in snow ski equipment that are being utilized at K2 Sports. Rick Greenwald then spoke briefly about safety issues in skiing.
An hour-long panel session on sports engineering education in Europe was quite interesting. We in the US can learn a great deal from what our European colleagues are doing to educate students interested in sports engineering and sports science.
I chaired a session called "Aerodynamics of Athletic Gear," which had six great talks. I learned a lot about how cycling aerodynamics is studied and how researchers are developing new technologies to improve fabrics worn by athletes. This latter work is important as athletes compete in events like speed skating where the difference between winning and losing can be thousandths of a second.
A session on "Modeling & Simulation" rounded out my day. Computational techniques have come a long way in the past couple of decades and it is fascinating to see what people are doing with finite-element analysis and computational fluid dynamics.
Besides the interesting perspectives I am getting from interacting with engineers (see my post from yesterday), I am enjoying interacting with people from all over the world. No matter where we come from, though, we are all interested in a better understanding of the natural world. We all speak the universal language of science!