Magnus force

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Magnus force

the force due to the interaction between the surface of a rotating object or body and the fluid medium (e.g. air or water) in which it is rotating. The force acts at right angles to the axis of rotation and, if the object is translating, to the path of the object. Also sometimes classified as a lift force. Examples are topspin causing downward motion of a ball (e.g. tennis) and sidespin causing sideways motion of a golf ball. (Named after the German physicist who described it in the mid-19th century.)
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A larger or heavier ball could travel the relatively short field of play of a ping-pong table without much spin-induced trickery, but the smaller and lighter table tennis ball is at the mercy of the Magnus effect - and inexperienced players are at the mercy of opponents who can skilfully exploit it.