ARLINGTON - A group of racecars piloted by the best drivers in NASCAR are turning a corner. Without warning, one of the cars suddenly hits an outside wall. There are no engine failures, no flat tires and none of the cars touched. So what happened? This question sparked Dr. Diandra Leslie-Pelecky's interest in NASCAR and the answers she found resulted in her recent book, "The Physics of NASCAR."
Leslie-Pelecky, of the University of Texas at Dallas physics department, says driving a stock car is much harder than people might think. Her presentation at noon Wednesday, March 4, in the Lone Star Auditorium at the Maverick Activities Center, 550 W. Nedderman Drive, will provide a behind-the-scenes tour of the world of racing from a scientific perspective.
Filled with examples of current NASCAR science, Leslie-Pelecky will explore how safer barriers revolutionized track safety, why designing tires for the new car is such a challenge and how something as simple as leaving an oil-tank lid slightly askew could lead to a competitive advantage.
The presentation is a part of The University of Texas at Arlington College of Science "Frontiers in Science" series of informal presentations on popular science topics. Call 817-272-3491 for more information.
The University of Texas at Arlington is an Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action employer.