News & Events
MIT scientists have created a mathematical model of knot strength
- January 13, 2020
- Posted by: Wiley M. Wagner
- Category: Science
Since ancient times, mankind has been experimenting with various types of nodes for a variety of purposes and tasks – however, it is in the marine and ship industry that such knowledge comes in handy most. Until now, we did not quite understand why some nodes are stronger and more resistant to external and internal deformations than others, and therefore a team of scientists from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology decided to clarify this matter by introducing a new mathematical simulation model designed to study in advance and check the knots for strength before they are even tied. And this model has already shown good accuracy results.
In particular, the mathematicians from MIT emphasized in their model the possibility of studying how certain types of bends and deformations of a fiber make it possible to make a knot stronger in comparison with other types of bends. To more clearly test their new theory and model, experts used several varieties of ropes and threads, adding special colored pigments to them, which would demonstrate in which areas and under what circumstances the knot deformation undergoes more pressure.
After conducting several experiment sessions in this way, the scientists found out that one of the most durable knots is those where the intersection of as many threads as possible and as many fluctuations in their rotation as possible is observed – for example, when knots are cross-knit, where the left and right sides of the knot are constantly press against each other, creating something like constant internal pressure. Armed with the results of this observation, MIT specialists created their own model.
However, they note that the mathematical model they presented, although it has a certain degree of accuracy and exponentialness, still cannot yet claim the final title, since they need to conduct several more experiments with it. So it remains only to wait for the latest news regarding a new mathematical model about the strength of knots, which has all the chances to reverse the concept of modern maritime affairs.