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The Physics of Aviation

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Jenny Carter

on 10 June 2013

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Transcript of The Physics of Aviation

The Physics of Aviation Presented by Jenny Carter Icarus and Daedalus In Greek mythology, there is a story of the inventor Daedalus and his son Icarus. In the tale, Daedalus and his son are sent to a labyrinth by King Minos as punishment for helping Theseus, a hero of Greek mythology, kill a minotaur and run off with Ariadne, the daughter of King Minos. To escape the labyrinth, Daedalus and Icarus's only option was to take to the air. Daedalus, being a clever inventor, crafted a pair of wings for his son and himself using wax as a glue of sorts. Because the sun would melt the wax and the sea would wet the feathers, both rendering Daedalus's creation incapable of flight, it was crucial that Icarus and Daedalus flew at a medial height so as not to be affected by either of these potentially life threatening risks. All was well until Icarus, exhilarated by flight, began to climb closer and closer to the sun, and his father's contraction started to fall apart. Finally, Icarus's wings collapsed completely and he fell to the sea and drowned.
Not only does this old tale prove that man has always aspired to fly, but it also proves that we've been aware of the dangers of flight for a very long time. Leonardo Da Vinci's Sketches In the 1480s, Leonardo Da Vinci executed the first real investigations of flight. His sketches, some of which are shown to the right, are the oldest known examples of actual studies in practical flight. Unfortunately for Da Vinci, his ideas about flight were incorrect. Pictured on the top right is one of Da Vinci's sketches of a proposed flying contraption that would use a screw to generate lift. Centuries later, the Wright brothers would prove that Da Vinci's idea of an air screw is impractical. A Prezi Presentation The Wright Brothers The "bicycle scientists" How it Flew The Wright Brothers' 1903 Flyer Bernoulli's Principle A way of measuring the relationship between pressure and speed. meanwhile... Progress In Europe Europe, unaware of the Wright brothers' creation, was still struggling to take to the air. European Pioneers of Flight In 1906, Alberto Santos Dumont became the first man to fly in Europe. The Wright brothers were secretive, so in 1903, very few people knew they had successfully piloted an aircraft. All of Dumont's inventions were free to the public, and he refused to accept any money for his work. Unfortunately, Dumont believed he was responsible for making the airplane a weapon of war, and because he couldn't entertain this possibility, he hung himself in 1932. Back in America The Wright brothers further grasped control of flight in 1904 and 1905. Due to their secrecy, however, this fact goes unrecognized by many. By 1906, they began making public flights. In 1908, the Wrights finally brought their flyer to Europe. Many European pioneers of flight had had some mild success before seeing the Wrights. Louis Bleriot, for example, crossed the English channel from France. However, when the Wrights demonstrated their invention, all of Europe accepted defeat in the race to take to the sky. WWI caused the technology of aviaton to improve at a faster rate, because technology became a priority. By the end of the war, planes were significantly more advanced, and crafted from metal for the most part, than they were at the start of the war. The Four Forces onto modern flight Lift Drag Weight/Gravity Thrust Anatomy of a Modern Plane Aileron Rudder Elevator Flap The Aileron rad yeah The Flap Flaps are metal extensions on wings that are hinged to the main wing and move up and down independently of the wing. The Elevator cool cool The Rudder Rudders, found on the end of vertical stabilizers, help an airplane with directional stability. Wing The Wing The wing is a fixed extension to the main body of an airplane. It has a flat underside and a slightly curved topside to give planes lift and help them fly. Bernoulli's Principle Bernoulli's Principle Makes Planes Fly By looking at the shape of the wing pictured above, it's evident that Bernoulli's Principle is responsible for the flight of an airplane. Bernoulli's principle states that when the speed of a fluid's motion increases, the pressure of that fluid decreases. here's why: The Propeller Although previously thought of as an air screw, the propeller is actually a rotating wing. Newton's Law The flap changes the shape of the wing. When tilted on a steep negative slope in relation to the wing, sharply increases drag in an airplane. When landing an aircraft, the flap increases drag to cause the plane to decelerate and descend. When tilted on a mild negative slope around ten to twenty degrees, in relation to the wing, the flap increases lift for takeoff with only an incidental increase in drag. The flap augments Bernoulli's principle and is a strong argument in favor of it. While many regard them as simple "bicycle scientists", the Wright brothers are much more than that. They proved that the propeller of an airplane is not a screw, like Da Vinci believed, but actually a rotating wing. This will be revisited in more depth later in the presentation. Wilbur and Orville Wright are responsible for creating the first aircraft to takeoff and land at the same altitude by its own power and under total control. While Bernoulli's Principle is a satisfactory answer to many regarding the question of how a plane flies, some have countered the principle with the question, "how does a plane fly upside-down?" Surely there is another force acting on planes in flight, because Bernoulli's Principle cannot be entirely responsible for upside-down flight.
The answer lies in Isaac Newton's third law, which states that for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. So, the action and reaction between the wing of a airplane and the relative wind is partially responsible for lift and therefore flight. http://fc01.deviantart.net/fs21/f/2007/286/4/e/The_Fall_of_Icarus_by_elmohead.jpg http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Alberto_Santos_Dumont_02.jpg Alberto Santos Dumont Bernoulli's principle relates to many parts of an airplane. Most popularly, it is known for its relation to the shape of a wing. Consider a plane flying through relatively still air. The airplane and its wings cut through the air, and momentarily separate it. In order for the air to stay still where it is, the air above the wing must move faster than the air below the wing to keep up, because the top of the wing's surface is curved and therefore the air on top must travel a further distance than the air on the bottom. This, according to Bernoulli's principle, causes higher air pressure in the air below the wing, and lower air pressure in the air above the wing. The higher air pressure below and the lower air pressure above the wing give the airplane lift and are very influential to a plane's flight. Bernoulli's principle is found once again in a propeller. Contrary to Archimedes water screw, the propeller is actually a rotating wing. Because of this, Bernoulli's principle is found on both sides of the propeller. Because Bernoulli's principle suggests that the air in front of the propeller has low air pressure, the propeller pulls the airplane forwards. First flown in Kitty Hawk with 12 horsepower for about three seconds In the 1700s, Daniel Bernoulli discovered the first effective way of measuring blood pressure– by puncturing arteries with pointed tubes. The amount of blood that rose in the tube was proportional to the patients blood pressure. Seeing this, Bernoulli concluded that the faster a fluid is moving, the smaller the fluid's pressure is. Although this method was painful, it was used for many years. Today Bernoulli's principle is used to measure air pressure in aviation. A big wing creates a lot of lift, but it also produces a lot of drag. A large wing will propel a plane to a higher altitude but will slow it down.
Lift increases when a plane goes faster. Because weight is decreased in lightly loaded planes, and because weight and lift are balanced forces, lift performance improved. The four forces must be balanced, however, so a given plane has a certain maximum altitude, called the service ceiling, where the engine generates less power and the thinner air of the high altitude prohibits the plane from continuing to climb. Lift is the force that acts opposite of gravity, generally upwards. It is created through differences in air pressure. Weight, or gravity, is a downward force. It pulls a plane towards Earth. Drag acts opposite of the direction of motion. It is caused by differences in air pressure and friction. Thrust works in the direction of motion. It is produced by the engine of a plane. Drag is increased when a plane has an open cockpit. When the cockpit and cabin are enclosed, drag is reduced, therefore increasing speed and therefore increasing lift. Again, the four forces must be in balance, so the drag must equal the thrust. Reduced drag gives a plane a faster speed. To alter the weight of a plane, the material it is made of must be changed. Experts explore different materials when considering weight, like wood, aluminum, and carbon fibers. Lighter materials allow planes to reach higher altitudes, until the thinner air causes the weight and lift to balance. The weight of a plane dictates, along with the amount of lift, which altitude it is able to reach. Greater thrust equals greater speed. However, with great speed comes great drag, so the engine of a plane and the body of the plane must work together to balance each other. The amount of thrust depends on the type of engine in a plane. The Aileron Ailerons are metal surfaces on wings that are hinged to the main wing and control the movement along the longitudal axis, called roll. The Wright brothers determined that the aileron is one of the most crucial parts of a plane regarding turning. There is one aileron on each wing of an airplane. When one aileron is tilted on a positive slope, the other is tilted on a negative slope. Imagine an airplane with the aileron on the right wing, the right aileron, tilted on a positive slope– upwards. When this happens, the left aileron tilts downwards on a negative slope, and the plane tilts so that the left wing moves upwards and the right wing moves downwards. This, also called rolling, causes the plane to turn. The rudder controls an airplane's movement along the vertical axis, also known as the yaw. Moving the rudder left to right will alter the direction the nose of the plane points. The rudder works with the ailerons to control the turning movement of an aircraft. Alone, a rudder can eventually turn an aircraft, but with the assistance of the rudder, the plane will make a turn much faster. The Elevator Elevators are found on the rear of an airplane and control the pitch of an airplane. Elevators, like rudders, flaps, and ailerons, are metal surfaces that are hinged to an airplane. On a plane, there are generally two elevators that move up and down to control the pitch of a plane. When the elevators are tilted on a negative slope– downward, the nose of the plane moves downward. The opposite happens when the elevators are tilted on a positive slope.
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