April 11, 2007

Public Lecture: NASCAR Science is Coming to Florida

College Park, MD — From the top racing shops to the asphalt at the Daytona International Speedway, physicist Diandra Leslie-Pelecky has been on a quest to uncover the science involved in stock car racing. Join her for a night of high speed fun and learn the science behind building for speed.

An avid NASCAR fan, Diandra Leslie-Pelecky’s interest in the science of the sport was piqued when she watched a startling car crash. Replays of the crash showed no obvious cause — no collision, no sideswipe, no flat tires, no engine failures. The mystery inspired Dr. Leslie-Pelecky to set off in search of the science of one of the world’s most popular sports — NASCAR racing.

In a free public lecture in Jacksonville, Dr. Leslie-Pelecky will explore NASCAR science including how a racecar’s shape affects its performance; why stock cars don’t use mufflers; why bump drafting works; how SAFER barriers protect drivers; what’s so special about the NASCAR "Car of Tomorrow"; and what Dale Earnhardt, Jr. wears under his firesuit.  

Built for Speed
NASCAR Physics with Diandra Leslie-Pelecky is one of a series of public lectures sponsored by the American Physical Society to coincide with the society’s annual meetings. This year’s meeting will be held at the Hyatt Regency Riverfront Hotel April  14-17, with public lecture taking place at the Hyatt Regency on Monday, April 16 at 7:00 PM.  

About Dr. Leslie-Pelecky
Dr. Leslie-Pelecky earned her PhD from Michigan State University and joined the faculty at the University of Nebraska in 1994. Although she is a passionate NASCAR fan during race season, at her university laboratory she performs academic research on magnetic nanomaterials with potential applications in improving MRI technology and cancer diagnosis.

About APS
The American Physical Society is the world's leading professional body of physicists, representing over 46,000 physicists in academia and industry in the US and internationally. It has offices in College Park, MD, Ridge, NY, and Washington, DC.

For further information or to arrange interviews with Dr. Leslie-Pelecky, contact James Riordon, Head of Media Relations, American Physical Society, riordon@aps.org, phone: 301-209-3238, cell: 301-919-2173.


About APS

The American Physical Society (www.aps.org) is a non-profit membership organization working to advance and diffuse the knowledge of physics through its outstanding research journals, scientific meetings, and education, outreach, advocacy and international activities. APS represents over 51,000 members, including physicists in academia, national laboratories and industry in the United States and throughout the world. Society offices are located in College Park, MD (Headquarters), Ridge, NY, and Washington, DC.

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