US 3513707 A
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GOLF GAME COMPUTING SYSTEM Filed Oct. 24, 1966 1'7 Sheets-Sheet 17 l ls 0 A") [I (:0 lazuli-l llhi United States Patent 3,513,707 GOLF GAME COMPUTING SYSTEM Jack A. Russell and Bradford J. Baldwin, Muskegon,
Micl1., assignors to Brunswick Corporation, a corporation of Delaware Filed Oct. 24, 1966, Ser. No. 588,922 Int. Cl. G011 5/02 US. Cl. 73-379 54 Claims ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE A golf game computing system that utilizes data rela tive to the initial direction, the initial velocity and spin of a golf ball hit from a tee to continuously compute instantaneous displacements of the ball in three mutually perpendicular direction throughout the calculated flight of the ball and indicates the same by continuously moving a projected spot on a scene. Factors such as gravity, lift due to backspin, drag and bouncing of the ball are taken into consideration in computation. An indicator operated by the computing system illustrates the calculated point of termination of the shot on a map of a golf hole so that the subsequent shot may be played accordingly and provides the golfer with information relative to changing the displayed scene, or operating a lie selecting device, and chipping and putting. The system includes various features of practical importance for minimizing false triggering of the computer, for automatically resetting the system when false triggering does take place, for disabling the data acquisition portion of the system as soon as data is acquired for a shot and for Warning a golfer that he is interferring with the data acquisition system or that the computer is not ready for a subsequent shot.
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION A number of attempts have been made to provide indoor golf games utilizing computer systems for computing the theoretical free flight trajectory of a golf ball struck by a golfer and which is intercepted before it travels a significant distance. Such games have not enjoyed a large degree of commercial success because heretofore they have not been capable of providing a golfer With all pertinent information relative to his shot. For example, in one commercialized version of an indoor golf game, it is considered that a ball will always follow a predesignated trajectory independently of the angle of elevation or azimuth of the shot and the trajectory is lengthened or shortened only in a manner dependent upon the initial velocity of the shot. In all versions known to be commercialized, none take into account the factor of spin that could produce a hook or a slice. While systems that take into account the factor of spin have been proposed, none have been commercialized.
Furthermore, the systems proposed and/or commercialized neglect a multiude of other factors that influence the trajectory of a golf ball and by doing so are incapable of realistically portraying to a golfer a simulation of the trajectory of the shot that would closely follow the trajectory that would be observed by a golfer if he were to hit the same shot on a golf course.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The principal object of the invention is to provide a i new and improved computer system for indoor golf games 3,513,707 Patented May 26, 1970 ice Another object of the invention is the provision of a computer for an indoor golf game that includes means for determining the initial velocity, the angle of elevation, the angle with regard to the azimuth and the spin on a golf ball struck from a tee, a means for utilizing the determined initial velocity to determine total instantaneous velocity of the ball at any point during its flight in a manner that reflects the effect of drag on the ball, a means for resolving the total instantaneous velocity into instantaneous velocity vectors along three mutually perpendicular axes, a means for introducing the effect on instantaneous velocity of lift and gravity, means for integrating the three instantaneous velocity vectors to provide the instantaneous displacement of a ball at any point in its flight along the three axes and a means for indicating to the golfer during the flight of the ball each of the three displacement quantities.
A further object i the provision of a computer for calculating the theoretical free flight trajectory of a golf ball hit from a tee, a ball spot projector for projecting and moving a spot of light relative to a scene depicting a hole on a golf course to illusrtate the trajectory of the ball hit from the tee, and a means operative near the terminal point of the flight for causing the projecting means to move the spot in a manner simulating the bouncing of a ball.
Yet another object is the provision of a computer for use in an indoor golf game including means for operating the computer comprised of a vibration sensitive element for determining when the flight of the ball is initiated by sensing the sound of the impact of a golf club against the ball, a light sensitive device for sensing when the flight of the ball is initiated by determining when the ball has left a predetermined tee point and a means responsive to the vibration sensitive element and the light sensitive device for actuating the computing means only when both have detected the initiation of the flight of the ball to preclude false triggering of the computer.
A still further object of the invention is the provision of a computing system for an indoor golf game including a means for sensing when the flight of a ball has been initiated from a tee for actuating the computing system, a means spaced along the path of the golf ball from the sensing means for detecting that a ball is in flight and a means responsive to the last-named means for automatically deactuating and resetting the computer means if the last-named means has not detected that the ball was in flight so as to preclude wasteful operation of the computing system.
Another object is the provision of a computing means for an indoor golf game including a means for indicating to a golfer when the computing means is not in readiness to compute the trajectory of the golf ball, means respon sive to the actuating of the computing means for actuating the indicating means, and means responsive to the completion of computation by the computing means for deactuating the indicating means.
A further object is the provision of a computing system for an indoor golf game including detecting means for acquiring data relative to the theoretical free flight trajectory of the golf ball, means responsive to detection of a golf ball by the detecting means for thereafter disabling the detecting means to preclude the detecting means from providing the computing means with erroneous information and a means operative after the completion of computation by the computing means for reenabling the detecting means for use in detecting information for a succeeding golf ball flight.
A still further object of the invention is to provide a computer system for use in indoor golf games that takes into effect the factors influencing the flight of the ball such as initial velocity drag, lift, gravity, initial angle of elevation of the short, initial angle of the shot with regard to the azimuth and spin in computing the theoretical free flight trajectory of the golf ball and provides suitable information to a first projecting means that is arranged to porject a spot of light on a scene representing a portion of the golf course to provide a visual representat on of the trajectory of the ball and to a second projectmg means that may be used in conjunction with a map of a hole or a golf course to provide the golfer with information relative to the point of termination of a shot so that he may use the information to select a lie for a subseqeunt shot, change the scene to that seen from the point of termination and inform the golfer as to whether succeeding shots should be played with the aid of the computer or on separate equipment such as a putting green without the use of the computer.
Other objects and advantages of the invention will become apparent from the following specification taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawing.
DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is a side elevation of a room housing a computing system made in accordance with the invention;
FIG. 2 is a schematic illustrating the computer triggering and initial velocity computing systems;
FIG. 3 is comprised of FIG. 3A and FIG. 3B, the latter being adapted to be placed to the right of the former, and is a schematic illustrating a trigonometry matrix for providing information relative to the initial angle of elevtion of the shot;
FIG. 4 is comprised of FIG. 4A and FIG. 4B, the latter being adapted to be placed to the right of the former, and is a schematic of the computer circuitry;
FIG. 5 is comprised of FIG. 5A and FIG. 5B, the latter being adapted to be placed to the right of the former, and is a schematic of a trigonometry matrix for providing information relative to the angle of the shot with regard to the azimuth;
FIG. 6 is a planar plan view of a printed circuit used in the spin detector of the instant invention;
FIG. 7 is a side elevation of a form used to support the printed circuit illustrated in FIG. 6 and further illustrates other elements of the spin detector and electrical connections to the com-puer;
FIG. 8 is a schematic of a spin determining matrix used in conjunction with the spin detector illustrated in FIGS. 6 and 7;
FIG. 9 is a schematic of the circuitry utilized to control a ball spot projector to illustrate the bouncing of a ball;
FIG. 10 is a schematic of automatic reset circuitry that is operated in the event the computer is improperly energized;
FIG. 11 is a side elevation of a ball spot projector;
FIG. 12 is an enlarged front elevation of a portion of the ball spot projector;
FIG. 13 is an enlarged side elevation of a portion of the ball spot projector with parts shown in section;
FIG. 14 is a front elevation of a portion of a ball spot projector with parts shown in section;
FIG. 15 is a bottom view of a portion of the ball spot projector mechanism;
FIG. 16 is a plan view of a map of a golf hole that may be used in playing a game with an apparatus made according to the invention;
FIG. 17 is a perspective view of a map spot projector system utilizing the map of FIG. 16 at one stage of operation;
FIG. 18 is a perspective view illustrating a stage in the operation of the map spot projecting system subsequent to that illustrated in FIG. 17; and
FIG. 19 is a schematic of a control system for driving the map spot and ball spot projectors with the outputs of the computer.
GENERAL DESCRIPTION As noted previously, the principal object of the invention is to provide an indoor game system utilizing a computer that controls output functions which are made visually apparent to a golfer and which are designed to give the visual impression the golfer would have received had he been playing on an actual outdoor golf course. Additionally, the output functions of the com-puter are used to provide data for various peripheral functions required in an indoor golf game.
More specifically, the computer is adapted to be used in a golf game wherein a tee area is arranged in front of a screen which may receive projected scenes from a projector representative of the views as from different portions of a golf course. The screen is of the penetrable type and behind the screen is placed spin detecting equipment. In front of the screen and between the screen and the tee area, other data acquisition equipment is placed; and the arrangement is such that when a golfer hits a ball from the tee area, the ball will travel a relatively short distance, usually less than thirty feet. After such a distance is traveled, the computer will be provided with all the necessary information required to perform its various functions.
A ball spot projector is arranged to project a small spot of light on the screen, which spot of light simulates a golf ball. When the golf ball is in flight, the spot of light will be moved on the screen by the projector under the influence of the computer to illustrate the trajectory of the ball. Means are also provided so that when the ball spot appears to initially contact the surface of the golf course as seen on the screen, it will be caused to bounce and/ or rol The computer includes means for generating bounce and roll signals which are provided to the ball spot projector to cause the latter to move the projected spot to simulate the bouncing and/or rolling of a golf ball on a fairway or a green, etc.
As mentioned above, spin detecting equipment is utillzed; and accordingly, during the flight of the ball, the computer provides the ball spot projector with information relative to hook or slice such that the projected spot will give the illusion of a hooking or slicing golf ball.
While the effect of drag on a golf ball in flight is not obviously perceptible to a golfer, it does have an effect on the distance that the shot will travel and influences the trajectory of the ball in flight. The computer includes means for diminishing the velocity of a ball in accordance with the effect of drag as will be seen. As a result, the computed distance a shot would have traveled had it not been intercepted by the spin detecting equipment very accurately represents the actual distance it would have traveled on an outdoor golf course. Furthermore, since the drag information is fed into the ball spot projector along wit-h other information, the trajectory of the ball as evidenced by the projected spot of light on the screen appears to closely simulate that of a ball in flight on an outdoor golf course.
As is well known, when a golf ball is hit properly by most clubs, back spin is imparted on to the ball which tends to provide a lifting force on the golf ball. Of course, the lifting force is somewhat opposed by gravity. The computer further includes means for introducing the effects of lift and gravity on the ball, and the projected spot of light illustrating the trajectory of the ball is controlled accordingly.
The computer also provides information to a meter which indicates the distance each ball would have traveled had it not encountered the pin detecting equipment. Obviously, on an outdoor golf course such a distance can only be estimated; but in an indoor golf game flexibility is added to the installation by providing the golfer with distance information. Additionally, the computer con.
trols an indicator which informs a golfer that the system is ready to handle the information relative to the next shot thereby enabling the golfer to hit the next shot. The computer also provides an indication to the golfer when the system is not ready to utilize further information such that the golfer is informed that the next shot should not be played.
Because the system contemplated by the instant invention provides for hooking and slicing unlike other systems currently commercially available, it will be appreciated that if a golfer hooks a shot. the next scene projected on the screen should be taken from the left side of the fairway or from the left rough as opposed from the center of the fairway as would be the case if the golfer hit a straight ball. Accordingly, it is necessary to indicate to the golfer which scene should be projected on the screen before the next shot is played and that the scene to be selected cannot be chosen merely as a function as distance. Thus, a map of each hole on a golf course is provided and the map is divided into a plurality of zones, each zone representing a scene. In order to indicate to the golfer which zone has shot would have terminated so as to enable him to select the next scene, information from the computer is fed to a second spot projector not unlike the ball spot projector which is arranged to project a spot of light on the zone on the map of the golf hole in which the shot terminated thereby enabling the golfer to select the scene corresponding to that zone for his next shot.
MATHEMATICS OF THE TRAJECTORY OF A GOLF BALL In order to make the projected ball spot on the screen appear to be a golf ball on an outdoor course, it is necessary to vary it in three distinct ways. Of course, it must be able to move vertically or in a Y direction to illustrate the elevation effect of the shot. It must also be able to be 1 varied horizontally or in an X direction to illustrate the effect of initial direction and that of hook or slice. Final- 1y, it should be varied in size to give the impression of distance in the Z direction. As will be seen, the ball spot projector is controlled in all three Ways. However, in order to do such, it will be apparent that the trajectory of a golf ball must be resolved into the three components of azimuth, elevation and length.
It will also be apparent that at any given instant, these quantities will vary from their values at another point of time because the instantaneous velocity of the golf ball is continually changing. In this respect, it will be noted that the instantaneous velocity in the Y or vertical direction will be positive and negative at different portions during the trajectory of a shot. Similarly, if a ball is hooked or sliced, the instantaneous "velocity of the ball in the azimuth or X direction may also be positive and negative during different portions of the trajectory depending upon its initial direction with regard to the azimuth. Only in the case of the distance in the length or Z direction, will the instantaneous velocity in that direction be positive or zero. Of course, in any event, the magnitude of the instantaneous velocities in any direction will be continually varying.
It has been found that the instantaneous velocity of a golf ball may be generally considered to follow the equation where:
V, is the instantaneous velocity, V is the initial velocity, and K is the drag coefficient.
It has been found that the drag coefficient K varies with the velocity of the golf hall. For example, when the velocity of the golf ball is less than one hundred feet per second, the air flowing about the golf ball is in a laminar state and K is approximately 0.50. However, at velocities greater than one hundred feet per second, the value of K drops off substantially to about 0.21. While in actuality, the curve representing the value of K for any given velocity does not represent a step function, it has been found that it is sufficiently linear for the velocities of concern such that the aforementioned values may be used. The manner in which the effect of drag is implemented will be seen hereinafter.
From the foregoing, it will be apparent that the one quantity necessary to determine the instantaneous velocity V is the initial velocity V The manner in which V is determined will be described hereinafter.
Since V may be calculated at any point in the time of trajectory of a golf ball, it will be apparent that it is necessary to resolve V into its X, Y and Z components, the X direction being to the right or left of a golfer facing a fairway, the Y direction being up or down and the Z direction being in the direction toward the cup. If 0, the angle of elevation of the shot, is known, it will be appreciated that the velocity in the Y direction is as follows.
Of course, Equation 2 does not represent the effect on the instantaneous velocity in the Y direction caused by gravity or by lift although it does include the effect of drag. The effect of lift and gravity will be treated hereinafter.
If B, the angle of the initial direction from the Z or the length axis, is known, it will be appreciated that the instantaneous velocity in the X direction may be deter mined from the following equation.
V =V cos 0 sin B (3) Here again, it will be apparent that Equation 3 does not include the effect on the instantaneous velocity in the X direction caused by hook or slice spin. The effect of spin on the instantaneous velocity in the X direction will be discussed hereinafter.
Knowing both the angle of elevation and the angle with regard to the azimuth, it will be appreciated that the instantaneous velocity in the Z or length direction may be determined by Equation 4 below.
It will be apparent that Equation 4 above, does not take into account any velocity factors in the Z direction due to lift or hook or slice spin. In this respect, it has been determined that the infiuence of these factors on instantaneous velocity in the Z direction are relatively insignificant and may be neglected.
Turning now to the effect of lift, it has been determined that a good approximation of the force acting on the ball due to lift will be achieved if lift is considered to be a function of the instantaneous velocity acting in a direction normal to the initial angle of elevation of the ball. Accordingly, the force provided by lift is treated as follows.
Lift Force=K V (5) where:
K is a constant.
It will be recognized that the acceleration due to gravity will be constant and acts in a strictly vertical direction.
- It is desirable to add vectorily the force of lift and the V (due only to lift and gravity) ft at 1st S =0atter t=0 (K V, cos Hg) dt