There are a number of primary design elements of a golf club driver that contribute to performance, including moment of inertia (MOI), coefficient of restitution (COR), and the placement of the driver center of gravity (CG). Although it is not necessarily a primary design objective when compared to MOI or COR, the reduction of aerodynamic drag during a driver swing has also become a design focus due to increasingly larger driver heads and their blunt geometries. The use of aerodynamic features to help reduce pressure drag experienced by a body in a flow field by delaying flow separation has been explored for a wide range of applications, and if used properly could reduce the aerodynamic drag experienced by a driver head. This reduction in aerodynamic drag could lead to increased club head speeds and greater distances off the tee. Presented are the experimental results of wind tunnel testing conducted in order to quantify the effects of applying aerodynamic features to the crown of a golf driver. Results from player tests quantifying the effect of these features on actual club head speed, and predicted distance gains based on measured drag reduction, are also presented. Overall, the use of these aerodynamic features has shown significant decreases in energy loss due to aerodynamic drag, which has led to significant increases in delivered club head speed and total distance. © 2014 Published by Elsevier Ltd.
Henrikson, E., Wood, P., & Hart, J. (2014). Experimental investigation of golf driver club head drag reduction through the use of aerodynamic features on the driver crown. In Procedia Engineering (Vol. 72, pp. 726–731). Elsevier Ltd. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.proeng.2014.06.123