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Ping Golf Aerodynamics

Lead investigators Dr John Hart

Funded by PING Golf

Aim

To use the latest computational techniques and modelling to provide understanding, insight, and recommendations, into the aerodynamic performance of PING Golf drivers. Ultimately to provide understanding and advice that leads to the design of a club that produces greater ball distances.

Description

CSER have been working with PING Golf since 2007 to help them understand the aerodynamic performance of their golf drivers. Using computational fluid dynamics (CFD), valuable insight has been gained into the flow mechanisms associated with these classic bluff body geometries. This has in turn been used to inform subsequent driver designs. CSER used both CAD provided by PING Golf, and geometry captured using non-contact laser scanning techniques of manufactured club heads, in the CFD simulations. 

Driver head performance has been analysed at various stages throughout a typical swing, and results have been validated using wind tunnel data as supplied by PING Golf. The information and advice provided to Ping assisted them in the optimisation of the aerodynamic performance of their driver heads. This was achieved through optimisation of shape, and utilisation of turbulators to further control flow behaviour. 

The result was the PING G30 driver, which is currently the #1 selling driver in the USA and UK golf markets and leads the industry in driving distance, in part due to increased club head speed as a result of reduced flow separation over the driver crown during the swing.

Impact

The flow visualisations, data, and advice CSER have provided PING Golf with, has helped inform the development of their product. This culminated in the 2014 release of the revolutionary PING G30 driver which incorporates crown turbulators, generating greater head speed and resulting in proven consistently longer drives.

Outputs

This work has resulted in IP in the form of a fully awarded patent. The work is protected by US patent and is the subject of current World Patent application and application in specific territories.

Henrikson, E.M., Wood, P.D., Hart, J., and Schweigert, B.D. (2013) 'Golf club heads with turbulators and methods to manufacture golf club heads with turbulators' US 8608587 B2

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