Tops aren’t just toys. Spinning tops (gyroscopes) help position satellites in space; in machine tools, top-like elements help in the manufacture of precision components. So “Supreme Skills!” tries to advance both fields by pitting the aerospace engineers who developed the control system for the ALOS-2 satellite against master machinists capable of milling and grinding to within 1/10,000 of a millimeter. The challenge: to create a top that will spin the longest on a 2-centimeter-diameter platform.
The goal is to produce the ultimate top: a miracle of balance that can spin longer than any other on a 2-centimeter-diameter platform. Ordinary commercial tops last about 2 seconds before falling off. 2 teams compete: “Team SpaceSpin” comprises the aerospace engineers who developed the control system for the ALOS-2 satellite. “The Master Craftsmen” team averages 72 years of age: extraordinary machinists capable of milling and grinding by hand to within 1/10,000 mm. Who will win this technology face-off?
This is the first top episode that the series did, this episode is not a two parter.