On the performance of Usain Bolt in the 100 m sprint
European journal of physics
Many university texts on Mechanics deal with the problem of the effect of the air drag force, using as example the slowing down of a parachute. Hardly no one discuss what happens when the drag force is proportional to both u and u^2. In this paper we deal with a real problem to illustrate the effect of both terms in the speed of a runner: a theoretical model of the performance of the 100 m world record sprint of Usain Bolt during the 2009 World Championships at Berlin is developed, assuming a
... ag force proportional to u and to u^2. The resulting equation of motion is solved and fitted to the experimental data obtained from the International Amateur of Athletics Federations that recorded Bolt's position with a LAVEG (laser velocity guard) device. It is worth to note that our model works only for short sprints.