Definition of Magnus effect in US English:

Magnus effect


  • The force exerted on a rapidly spinning cylinder or sphere moving through air or another fluid in a direction at an angle to the axis of spin. This force is responsible for the swerving of balls when hit or thrown with spin.

    • ‘A lift-producing arrangement suitable for driving a boat by the Magnus effect comprises an elongate tubular envelope mounted for rotation about its longitudinal axis.’
    • ‘The lift force is the upwards or sidewards force that is responsible for the Magnus effect.’


1920s: named after Heinrich G. Magnus (1802–70), German scientist.


Magnus effect

/ˈmaɡnəs əˌfekt/