Engineering Innovation Podcast and Radio Series

Truly Instant Replay

PostedFebruary 4, 2005

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The quarterback protects the ball and plunges toward the end zone, buried in a pile of bodies somewhere near the goal line.  Controversy erupts, and video replays can't see the ball to settle it.  That wouldn't happen with a new system being developed by Cairos Technologies in Germany.  They propose imbedding balls with tiny radio transmitters that send signals—two thousand times a second—to antennas scattered around the stadium.  A computer would gather those signals, along with reference information, and instantly pinpoint the ball's exact 3-D location on the field.  If there's a score, or a first down, refs could be notified by a vibration device.  With the National Academy of Engineering, Randy Atkins, WTOP Radio.