Speedo launch 'fastest' swimsuit

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src=' ' class='caption'> Speedo International, the swimsuit makers, is launching what they claim to be the world's fastest swimsuit.

Updated: February 25, 2007 10:05 IST
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Speedo International, the swimsuit makers, is launching what they claim to be the world's fastest swimsuit - and it looks set to make an impression at the Olympics in Athens this year. The new suit has been tested using the techniques in fluid dynamics, and the claims are that it will increase a swimmer's speed by reducing dragging by water. Some of the world's top swimmers have been testing out the latest gear, and seem to like the fit. "The suit feels fantastic. It is a big change from where we have been in the past, it's obviously moving forward. The advancements in the suit make it a lot more comfortable, and obviously faster, which is what we want," says Grant Hacket, Australian Olympic and World Swimming Champion. And some believe that it might give them an edge in the water. "I train hard all year round, and it would be great to get to the Olympics, behind the blocks to know I've got the new fast suit on and it is the extra edge," says Katy Sexton, British World Swimming Champion. Full body suits made from fabric that attempts to mimic sharks skin first appeared four years ago, and since then Speedo researchers believe to have discovered that a shark's skin texture is not the same the length of its body. Shark skin is believed to vary to manage the flow of water, enabling it to swim faster. As a result of this theory, research began and swimmers were scanned to enable computer and actual models to test the new suit. A process that is used in Formula One, called computational fluid dynamics, was applied and Speedo created a virtual swimmer to see how water moved over the body. "The suits for this Olympics is made of two fabrics, not one, and there's a male suit and a female suit. During the course of our computational fluid dynamics analysis and our testing we discovered that water moves around differently around female than it does a male," says Barry Bixler, Computational Fluid Dynamics Expert. They believed the computational fluid dynamics process would find the areas of greatest friction, thus enabling them to design a suit that would reduce friction where it was greatest. Tests were then carried out on the new suit - FS2 - the world's first body suit made specifically for men and women.(AP)

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