I recently answered this question: Laminar Versus Turbulent Flow and it caused me to think of the following situation.
Given that an (American) football weighs between Football 400 to 430 grams, and a (FIFA Rules) soccer ball is in the same weight range, 410 to 450 grams, which will travel further, when thrown under the same conditions?
I am assuming both are the same weight, say 420 grams, and both are fired into still air at the same angle, say 45 degrees, by a machine that imparts the same initial velocity to both of them. Also no spin is involved, although it would be interesting to see, if the soccer ball was allowed to spin, would that reduce drag, by reason of the planar-like surfaces it is composed of, and the regular ridges between the panels?
I am assuming no spin of any kind and the same "flight path" but any answers that incorporate more realistic situations will be welcomed. It's the difference in drag that I was initially interested in, but any answer that applies reality to the problem is appreciated.
Please ignore the relative sizes shown in the picture, as these are chosen at random.
In professional play the football has a long axis of 28 cm , a long circumference of 71 cm, and a short circumference of 53 cm. The soccer ball has a diameter of 22 cm and a circumference of 70 cm.
My guess would be the football, rather than the soccer ball, because of it's shape, and if so, can any estimate be made of the extra distance?
I do realise that this is a "novelty" type question, compared to the majority of questions received here, but I do think that there may be some interesting fluid dynamics related physics involved.