Physics Students Try To Create A "Street Fighter" Hadouken Fireball

Anybody who has played Street Fighter is familiar with the awesome power of the "Surge Fist" attack, otherwise known as the Hadouken Fireball. While some of us might be intimidated by the thought of tapping into this primal energy, a group of students are determined to recreate it—by setting a dodgeball on fire.

Okay, so maybe that's not as cool as focusing your willpower through the palms of your hands. But, it's still a pretty awesome concept. The students—who published a paper in the Journal of Physics Special Concepts—realized that it could be theoretically possible to throw a gasoline-soaked dodgeball fast enough so that the viscous drag forces would ignite the fuel.

They calculated that this feat is possible, if the ball were thrown at 93 mph. Unfortunately, there's a catch:

The fastest throwers in the sport of dodgeball can only achieve velocities of around 66 mph....Even if we assume the player could still throw as fast with a gasoline-soaked dodgeball as with a normal dodgeball, they would not be able to attain this auto-ignition velocity even momentarily, and as such could certainly not maintain it for any length of time, as would be required for the ball to ignite. It may be interesting for future research to explore mechanical methods of launch.

I wish them well in their future efforts—as long as I'm as far away as possible.

Read the students' paper in the Journal of Physics Special Concepts