Did you know that nine swimming world records were shattered at the 2012 London Olympics? Despite bans on high-tech swimsuits and other technology, swimmers continue to get faster every year. Now, engineering students at The University of Texas at Austin have built something that could help swimmers get to the next level: a smart starting block that uses LabVIEW.
The block uses Nintendo Wii sensors to measure the normal and shear forces. These sensors then transmit the data through Bluetooth back to LabVIEW. The system also includes a webcam that acquires images, providing video of the dive. The LabVIEW program analyzes the data automatically, giving swimmers more information on what they need to fix.
Most impressively, these students were barely familiar with LabVIEW at the beginning of the project. Well done, team!