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Old 06-26-2010, 02:44 PM
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Default Throwing a disc on the moon

A friend and I were recently having a debate over how far you could throw a disc on the moon. On the one hand, it has only 1/6th the gravity of earth, which would seemingly enable monster drives. But on the other hand, it has no atmosphere, which would not allow the disc to produce lift and cause it to nosedive almost immediately.

So my fellow disc golfers, how far could you throw a disc on the moon?
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Old 06-26-2010, 02:51 PM
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Probably exactly as far as you could throw anything else that mass, aerodynamics are not a factor so it's just about projectile physics.
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Old 06-26-2010, 02:58 PM
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Alan Shepard hit a golf ball on the moon. The dimples on the golf ball help the flight, so I would assume, the disc golf disc would do something similar. Here is the video:

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Old 06-26-2010, 02:59 PM
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i think centrifugal force may still affect flight characteristics, even if there is no air resistance. . i read an article about a physisist who is all into the idea of baseball on the moon. i think he was working under the assumption that there would be atmosphere under a dome, which would mean aerodynamics would become a factor.
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Old 06-26-2010, 03:10 PM
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I think if you had a really light disc, it would fly far, because of the 1/6th gravity, and it would fly very straight, because of the spinning action acting like a gyroscope, but it would drop with the pull of gravity.

Its really hard to say how far it would go , because there would be no wind resistance, but there would also be no lift. That being said, if you had two discs the same weight, lets say a 175 Boss and a 175 Magnet, with air resistance, and lift taken out of the equation, and only gravity and spin affecting the flight, and you had a real pro like Ken Clemo, who could throw perfect, in theory, the driver and the putter would go the same distance.

Just a thought. Anyone have any comment on my theory? It sounds logical.
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Old 06-26-2010, 03:28 PM
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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5C5_dOEyAfk
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Old 06-26-2010, 03:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jak3 View Post
I remember seeing that video. Its good for just the gravity, but it dosen't take into fact the spinning of the disc.
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Old 06-26-2010, 03:45 PM
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The lack of atmosphere will remove glide but also remove drag. You won't get the lift you normally would but the preservation of velocity would be fantastic. In this case gyroscopics will be more important than aerodynamics.
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Old 06-26-2010, 03:47 PM
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You'd be looking at the disc purely as a projectile and not as a wing.
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Old 06-26-2010, 04:15 PM
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*My opinion*
I don't think that the spin would affect the disc at all. I think the way you would throw a disc the farthest on the moon would be to throw it like a baseball with a tommy or thumber. I think if you throw a disc backhand on the moon, you would get 6 times more distance than you can throw a baseball on earth with a backhand motion. The gyroscopic motion of the spinning would do nothing to keep it in the air like it does with an atmosphere.
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