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Trueness Meter - Golf Green Roughness Measurement

Lead Engineers Nick Hamilton, Terry Senior, Ben Heller

Funded by Royal and Ancient Golf Club / Sports Technology Research Institute


The STRI consult with golf courses on the best ways to improve the quality of their golf greens. They are able to prescribe interventions which improve condition of greens making them play more predictably.

As part of a suite of surface tests they required an objective measure of the roughness of the green. The brief was open and the CSER team developed the concept through several iterations of prototype initially funded by the R&A. Working closely with the STRI the sensing and sampling systems were trialled on real course conditions ensuring the fidelity was sufficient to determine differences across a complete range of green types.

The final sensing system is patent protected and was built in to a robust carriage for convenient use on golf courses worldwide. This is paired with custom electronics which sample, process and output the cumulative average vertical and lateral deviations. The Trueness meters are returned to CSER annually for calibration checks and servicing.


The designs were implemented in a production product which is subject to two patents shared between the STRI and Sheffield Hallam University and has revolutionised the sports surface industry.

It was awarded the Best Use of Technology by a Governing Body at the Sports Technology Awards in 2013.

See the STRI Trueness Meter in action

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