Predicting a Die Throw
Vegas, Monte Carlo, and Atlantic City draw people from around the world who are willing to throw the dice and take their chances. Researchers from the Technical University of Lodz, Poland, have spotted something predictable in the seemingly random throw of the dice.
By applying chaos theory and some high school level mechanics, they determined that by knowing the initial conditions – such as the viscosity of the air, the acceleration of gravity, and the friction of the table – it should be possible to predict the outcome when rolling the dice.
The researchers created a three-dimensional model of the die throw and compared the theoretical results to experimental observations. By using a high speed camera to track the die’s movement as it is thrown and bounces, they found the probability of the die landing on the face that is the lowest one at the beginning is larger than the probability of landing on any other face.
This suggests that the toss of a symmetrical die is not a perfectly random action. “Theoretically the die throw is predictable, but the accuracy required for determining the initial position is so high that practically it approximates a random process,” said Marcin Kapitaniak, a Ph.D. student at the University of Aberdeen, Scotland.
“Only a good magician can throw the die in the way to obtain the desired result.” These results suggest that randomness in mechanical systems is connected with discontinuity as the die bounces. “When the die bounces on the table, it is more difficult to predict the result than in the case of a die landing on the soft surface,” Kapitaniak said.
Article: “The three-dimensional dynamics of the die throw” is accepted for publication in Chaos.
Authors: Marcin Kapitaniak (1,2), Jaroslaw Strzalko, Juliusz Grabski (2) and Tomasz Kapitaniak (2)
(1)University of Aberdeen, Scotland
(2)Technical University of Lodz, Poland
Phat Nguyen | Newswise Science News
The most recent press releases about innovation >>>
Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:
A multi-institutional research collaboration has created a novel approach for fabricating three-dimensional micro-optics through the shape-defined formation of porous silicon (PSi), with broad impacts in integrated optoelectronics, imaging, and photovoltaics.
Working with colleagues at Stanford and The Dow Chemical Company, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign fabricated 3-D birefringent...
In experiments with magnetic atoms conducted at extremely low temperatures, scientists have demonstrated a unique phase of matter: The atoms form a new type of quantum liquid or quantum droplet state. These so called quantum droplets may preserve their form in absence of external confinement because of quantum effects. The joint team of experimental physicists from Innsbruck and theoretical physicists from Hannover report on their findings in the journal Physical Review X.
“Our Quantum droplets are in the gas phase but they still drop like a rock,” explains experimental physicist Francesca Ferlaino when talking about the...
The Max Planck Institute for Physics (MPP) is opening up a new research field. A workshop from November 21 - 22, 2016 will mark the start of activities for an innovative axion experiment. Axions are still only purely hypothetical particles. Their detection could solve two fundamental problems in particle physics: What dark matter consists of and why it has not yet been possible to directly observe a CP violation for the strong interaction.
The “MADMAX” project is the MPP’s commitment to axion research. Axions are so far only a theoretical prediction and are difficult to detect: on the one hand,...
Broadband rotational spectroscopy unravels structural reshaping of isolated molecules in the gas phase to accommodate water
In two recent publications in the Journal of Chemical Physics and in the Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters, researchers around Melanie Schnell from the Max...
The efficiency of power electronic systems is not solely dependent on electrical efficiency but also on weight, for example, in mobile systems. When the weight of relevant components and devices in airplanes, for instance, is reduced, fuel savings can be achieved and correspondingly greenhouse gas emissions decreased. New materials and components based on gallium nitride (GaN) can help to reduce weight and increase the efficiency. With these new materials, power electronic switches can be operated at higher switching frequency, resulting in higher power density and lower material costs.
Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE together with partners have investigated how these materials can be used to make power...