London: Secrets of the new official World Cup ball, the Brazuca, have been revealed and the official football makers Adidas have said that the new football has improved touch and accuracy.
Brazuca, the 12th ball created by Adidas for the World Cup, is the successor of the Jabulani, which was the official ball at the 2010 competition in South Africa that was heavily criticised and got the company under fire for it.
However, Adidas has claimed that Brazuca has got improved touch and accuracy and the company’s football director Matthias Mecking said that they did extensive flight path analysis and the results revealed constant and predictable paths, with deviations hardly recognizable, the BBC reported.
Three factors have reportedly been outlined by aerodynamics experts, which are expected to influence how the official ball of Brazil 2014 behaves.
Dr Rabi Mehta, branch chief at the US space agency’s (NASA) Ames Research Center in California, outlined roughness as a factor that dictates what the critical speed is going to be at which one gets maximum ‘knuckling’ of the ball when the ball is not spinning or spins very little.
However, Dr. Mehta, who is an aerodynamics expert, revealed that when the ball is spinning one gets the Magnus effect that makes the ball curve and that can be seen in banana kicks around the wall, which has been mentioned as another factor.
The NASA engineer said that Jabulani’s knuckling effect and smoother surface, compared to the Brazuca, explained its unpredictability, but by making the new ball rougher they are back to square one as it would help in terms aerodynamics of the ball, revealed Dr. Mehta.
Another important factor outlined by Dr Mehta is the seams of a football that disturb the flow of the air as they determine to a large extent the roughness of the ball.
However, with Brazuca’s six thermally bonded propeller-shaped panels, less than Jabulani’s eight, Teamgeist’s 15 or the 32 of traditional footballs, Adidas said that the new seam geometry would give the ball aerodynamic accuracy and a stable flight.