WCF join forces with National Research Council of Canada to investigate brush heads and sweeping technique

The World Curling Federation and the Ottawa based National Research Council of Canada (NRC) are investigating the effects of curling brush head technology on ice surfaces and their potential effects on where stones come to rest.

During the 2015/16 season a series of moratoriums were placed on certain brushes due to their perceived effects on the ice surface and trajectory of the stone. During three days of testing, the National Research Council’s ice and materials technologies experts are providing on-site analysis of various manufacturers’ broom heads. The tests are assessing respective changes in the distance, path, speed, acceleration, and rotation of a stone as it travels down a sheet of ice.

Results from the testing will allow the World Curling Federation to make informed decisions about possible new regulations on the use of engineered brush heads and sweeping techniques for the 2016/17 curling season.

Kate Caithness, WCF President, said: “I am pleased that the WCF has such a strong team in place to lead the Summit and work with the National Research Council of Canada to ensure the best possible future for our sport.

“Through the rigorous testing taking place this week we hope to formulate a set of policies and rules pertaining to brush head technology and sweeping techniques, which will be presented to our Member Associations for ratification. The plan is to have all this accomplished before the start of the 2016-17 season."

“NRC has a long history of supporting Canada’s Olympic summer and winter athletes,” said Dr. Duncan Stewart, General Manager for Security and Disruptive Technologies at the National Research Council of Canada. “Curling brooms are rapidly becoming high tech, and we are pleased to be working with the World Curling Federation to evaluate curling equipment technologies and enable well informed decisions by the sport governing body.”

Through a process involving international athletes, sport experts, ice professionals and other important stakeholders new regulations will be proposed for approval by the WCF Members at the WCF's Annual General Assembly – to be held in September in Stockholm, Sweden.

You can find out more about the NR here, www.nrc-cnrc.gc.ca/