Competence areas within Sports Technology

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Hockeyspelare i skottögonblick, hockeyklubba tillverkad av tunt vävda kompositer

Different types of sports face many similar challenges related to technology. We have identified four competence areas - or technology platforms - where the high competence and advanced equipment found at Chalmers and among our many collaboration partners in academia and industry can make a difference in meeting the demands of technological research in sports.

If you have ideas of how our knowledge can be useful in your sport, contact us by sending an email to sportteknologi@chalmers.se

Materials

The need for light, strong and/or energy absorbing materials with application-tailored stiffness is key in most sports and movement-enabling products (such as in sports equipment, protective wear, apparel, prosthetics, orthoses and sports infrastructure). In common for these applications is that, most often, the design challenge lies in the optimization of the material system to obtain the desired mechanical response at minimum weight. This, since weight is directly related to performance, with performance in its widest meaning embracing speed, acceleration, handling, support, protection, comfort etc. Relevant materials in this context contains structural composites, smart textiles and polymer foams. Our research aims to develop new material solutions, but also to improve the understanding as well as the properties of existing materials – and translate the results from the sports sector to e.g. aircraft or car industries.

Contact

Martin Fagerström
  • Professor, Material and Computational Mechanics, Industrial and Materials Science

Digitalization

During the past ten years, the pervasive connectivity of society has penetrated into the sport sector and drastically changed the way we practice and consume sports. Digitalization in sports is a widely accepted concept adapted in research and by major industrial players. The concept is penetrating all layers from top athletes aiming at improved performance to everyday exercising people optimizing their daily training, or even more commonly, using it for motivational reasons.

In this context, high-end measurement techniques are currently being developed. At Chalmers, we work on new sensor technology that can be integrated in sports equipment. We also develop data drive, artificial intelligence-based, methods to treat the vast amount of data generated in order to present relevant parameters to athletes, coaches and spectators.

Contact

Moa Johansson
  • Associate Professor, Data Science and AI, Computer Science and Engineering
Dan Kuylenstierna
  • Associate Professor, Microwave Electronics, Microtechnology and Nanoscience

Fluid dynamics

Fluid dynamic properties are crucial in many sports, for example biking, alpine skiing,  back jumping and motor sports. In e.g. sailing, both the motion and action of the surrounding water against the hull, and the interaction between the wind and the sail, are central for high speed. Our expertise in Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD), and access to specialized laboratories for hydrodynamic and aerodynamic testing, allows us to tackle complex fluid dynamics challenges in many sports. It thereby also allows us contribute both to improved equipment and athletic techniques.

Contact

Håkan Nilsson
  • Full Professor, Fluid Dynamics, Mechanics and Maritime Sciences

Biomechanics

Sport injuries are common and tremendously costly for society, in addition to being devastating to the athlete. We use our expertise in Human Body Modelling (HBM) and experimental biomechanics to help prevent injuries by means of the development of regulations, test standards and protective gear. Work is based on merging advanced HBM with accident data collection and analysis. Vital in this work is the incorporation of novel materials and new digitalization techniques, facilitated by close collaboration with these other research areas.

Contact

Johan Davidsson
  • Associate Professor, Vehicle Safety, Mechanics and Maritime Sciences