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# Kites

Did you ever wonder how kites fly? Well here is you answer and much, much more.
by

## kristen frawley

on 1 June 2012

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#### Transcript of Kites

What forces are acting on the kite when it is flying? Lift
Lift results from wind pressure hitting the surface of the kite.
the wind pushes the kite up. Drag
drag is caused by the wind resistance on the kite's surface.
drag can also be caused by turbulence or "bumpy air" behind the kite. Gravity
gravity is the downward force created by the weight of the kite Extra, extra:
At the same time wind pushes into the kite creating lift, the air pressure on the top of the kite is lower. This area of low pressure creates a vacuum which sort of sucks the kite upward.
It is called Bernouli's Principal. How does a kite fly? The kite needs to have enough life to overcome gravity and drag Extra, extra:
Lift, gravity, and drag are all working on the kite. The point where they meet is called the "center of Pressure". This is called the "tow point" on the kite. On typical diamond (dihedral) shaped kites this is where you tie the string. The wind must push equally on each side of the kite.
The bridle of the kite needs to be positioned evenly between each side of the kite.
If the kite isn't balanced, it will spin. Extra, extra:
Yaw = think of the kite spinning like dinner plate flat on a table
pitch - spinning side to side or horizontally - think of a a bird dipping and soaring
roll - think of an airplane spiraling What does the tail of a kite do? The tail of a kite adds stability and balance.
It adds drag which limits how high a kite can fly
it might make a kite fly more smoothly in high winds by lowering the force of the lift. Where and when is it safe to fly a kite? Common Sense
Do not fly very close to or over roads where drivers could be distracted
Do not fly noisy kites in crowded places
Clean up after yourself. Take all of your materials and trash home with you
Be careful not to fly where you might scare nesting birds
Avoid other kites, kite lines and kite fliers. safety
Kite lines conduct electricity so do not fly near overhead power lines
do not fly in electrical storms
Flying lines on larger kites can hurt your hands. Watch out for line burns. If you fly a large kite, wear gloves.
Be aware of who or what is behind you as well as in front of you. How will wind speed affect the kite? What happens if a kite isn't balanced? Kites A variety of conditions determine whether your kite rises to the clouds or crashes down to land. Ideal wind speed factors into your success a great deal but varies by kite type. LIght Winds
Diamond and dragon kites fly well in light winds. More specifically, zero wind and ultra light kites fly best with winds between 2 and 5 mph, while moderately light kites, large foils, large power kites, deltas, box and cellular kites fly best in winds ranging from 6 to 12 mph. Medium Winds
Most standard kites, including many diamond kites, fly best in medium wind. Standard kites handle wind speeds between 13 and 17 mph well, with the upper wind range of standard kites resting around 18 to 20 mph. Heavy Winds
Parafoil and specialized kites need slightly stronger winds to fly best. Most specialized kites fly best in 19 to 24 mph winds. Vented sport kites and small power foils need 25 to 31 mph winds. Conveyances pulled by kites work well in 31 to 40 mph winds, and buggies and vented kites can even handle winds ranging from 41 to 50 mph. Where do winds come from? Wind happens because bodies of air are at different temperatures. The difference in temperature causes different air pressure. Hot air has high pressure and rises. Cold air has low pressure and sinks. This causes air flow or wind.
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