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# Space Hockey

Hockey in space with the field in a loop.
 (+7, -2) [vote for, against]

Start with an ice rink in a loop spin it to create artificial gravity. Players can go one way to get extra speed or the other to get weightless. will probably require different scoring system since there are no ends to the field. I'd imagine that you could create all kinds of strategies using the spin.
 — Spaceman Spiff, Feb 17 2008

just change at halftime.
 — FlyingToaster, Feb 18 2008

Finaly an idea that makes some sense. I'm voting for it just to reward the fact that it was complete and not crippled by scibabble.
 — WcW, Feb 18 2008

Obligatory mobius strip reference: Instead of a loop, make the ice surface a mobius strip. Wait a second, forget that - they'd never get the zamboni off the ice!
 — Canuck, Feb 18 2008

Where are the goals? Maybe just one line on the ice and everytime you cross it in your direction it's a goal. The game would be sort of measured in laps if you see what I mean.
 — wagster, Feb 18 2008

//Players can go one way to get extra speed or the other to get weightless// Can anyone explain this bit?
 — coprocephalous, Feb 18 2008

 No, it actually makes sense! If you skate 'with' the ice, you go around the loop faster and feel more centripetal force. If you skate 'against' the motion of the ice, you feel less centripetal force. And yes, if you go fast enough, you can hit "escape velocity" and jump upwards and hit the other side.

Got it?
 — GutPunchLullabies, Feb 18 2008

I have a feeling that the physics of skating would be severely damaged by weightlessness. As I recall, skates actually require the user to float on a thin layer of water pressurized by the skaters weight.
 — DanDaMan, Feb 18 2008

He's right, you know.
 — wagster, Feb 18 2008

No he's not - it's a commonly held misconception that the prssure of ice skates melts the ice and makes it slippery. See link.
 — hippo, Feb 18 2008

But you *do* need friction - no weight, no friction and, by extension, less weight, less friction.
At some point you'll probably be all floaty, but frozen solid to the rink.
 — coprocephalous, Feb 18 2008

I disagree. You will be floaty, and have extreme difficulty putting enough force on your skates to change your trajectory. But nothing will make you stick in place, you will only be 'stuck' at your current rate of velocity, as any attempt to change it simply levitates you gently into the air.
 — GutPunchLullabies, Feb 18 2008

It feels like it levitates you gently, but actually you are describing a chord across some portion of the circle, and landing further on.
 — GutPunchLullabies, Feb 18 2008

Well, he's definitely right or wrong.
 — wagster, Feb 18 2008

Travelling the one direction doesn't really give you extra speed, because that speed would be relative to the rink.
 — RayfordSteele, Feb 18 2008

We've had these for years in England.
 — MaxwellBuchanan, Feb 18 2008

sp: Space Ice Hockey
 — gnomethang, Feb 18 2008

The extra speed would would only exist if there was a fixed goal, otherwise theres no "extra speed" in going with the ice. Could mount goal to a track so it doesn't move around with the ring.
 — Spaceman Spiff, Feb 19 2008

I assume he means more weight=more normal force=the ability to skate harder. But am I giving him too much credit?
 — GutPunchLullabies, Feb 19 2008

Oh, I see you are him. Well, who better to ask?
 — GutPunchLullabies, Feb 19 2008

Your explanation described just plain sliding on ice which is not what skates do. Skates have a v shaped groove cut down the length which is what makes them work.
 — DanDaMan, Feb 19 2008

 The observing crowds would have to rotate with the field or they will get dizzy watching from the sideline.

 Good skates are sharpened to the point of cutting the unwary. Sharpen skates provide the same amount of force down onto the ice but on less surface area. The actual shape of the bottom of the blade varies depending on the skate type and custom ones can be customized to depend on the weight and style of the skater. Lighter skaters need less float. Some, lengthwise, are very straight to grab more ice for start stop speed (as in hockey skates) and other are not as flat to allow for turning (figure skates).

 Looking at the blade lengthwise, you might notice various configuration between skate blades (“V”, “^”, or a sideways “C” shape, etc). The ice melts directly under the sharp portion(s) of the blade. Those with two sharpen parallel edges actually melt this ice and capture the water for a short period. Once the pressure is released, the water quickly refreezes. You can see this effect by looking closely at the ice trail just after a skater passes or examining the trail of someone making turns such that their trail over-runs itself (circles). Ice kept at higher temperatures (barely freezing) will actually appear wet for a short while after being transitioned.

 As an experiment, take a very thin wire and attach each end to a heavy object, place the wire over a block of ice and leave it in the freezer for a while. Come back later and the ice will have melted underneath the wire and refrozen above the wire. Magic.

 As for the physics of skating faster or slower on a squirrel cage treadmill; to those on the field, speed is relative but this is not true for acceleration down into the field. Other players would see you move one direction or another in unremarkable fashion. However, by traveling against or with the rotation of the cage, the effects of centripetal force are either greater (i.e. more apparent weight) or lesser (i.e. apparent weightless).

 Indeed, those skating toward weightlessness need, and get, less skate pressure. A good jump at that point would put one closer to escape velocity (at least escape from the centripetal force holding one to the cage). In fact one would appear to be ‘flying’ or moon-walking. Collisions would be inevitable as would the subsequent mayhem.

Sharp skates and weightlessness sound like an excellent way to enhance the unbridled melee that is the mainstay of US Hockey. They are much like European football games but, in the US, the stadium doesn’t get to join in on the fun. I give the idea a [+].
 — CwP, Feb 20 2008

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