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B Pressure inside a basket ball

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  1. Mar 26, 2016 #1
    International basked ball games are played with a basket ball inflated to 8 PSI. But I am curious to understand how it can stay inflated when the atmospheric pressure is 14.7 PSI.
    So shouldn't the external atmospheric pressure overcome the pressure within the ball ? Shouldn't the air pressure within the basket ball be greater than the atmospheric pressure ?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 26, 2016 #2

    Simon Bridge

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    Welcome to PF;
    The basketball is inflated to "8PSI gauge" ... which is 22.7PSI absolute.
    This is because pressure gauges work off the difference between two pressures and the most handy pressure is the ambient air pressure. This also means that basket balls are at different pressures depending on the weather.
     
  4. Mar 26, 2016 #3
    What has Tom Brady got to say about this?
     
  5. Mar 26, 2016 #4

    Simon Bridge

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  6. Mar 26, 2016 #5
    Yes. Big sports story for 2014-2015. Some of the roadies who work for the New England Patriots heard that quarterback Tom Brady thinks it is easier to throw the football in cold weather if it is inflated to a lower pressure. So, for a big play-off game in 2014, they inflated the official game balls to below regulation pressure. The rest is history.

    Chet
     
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