AN ANALYTIC SURVEY OF LOW-SPEED FLYING DEVICES - NATURAL AND MAN-MADE

John McMasters

Abstract


This paper has presented a brief survey of the geometric and energetic charatteristics of a range of flying devices covering twelve orders of magnitude in weight. It has been shown that there is a general pattern and order in the data presented. However, there exlst at least as many detailed dlfferences and anomolies between various types of flying devlce as there are similarities. The plcture presented remains, in many partlculars, incomplete and/or lnconclusive. One factor appears clearly, however: Explanations of flight phenomena based on analyses which do not account for the coupling between aerodynamics (fundamental fluid mechanlcs), structural- and material characteristics, and operatlonal requirement and constralnts are not adequate. Nature continues to be a rich source of lnsplratlon to the deslgner and englneer - partlcularly to those ln the fleld of ultra-light aeronautics. It has been a major goal of this survey to present an introduction to the broad range of informatlon whlch may be of value in future research.

Keywords


Aerodynamics, Structures, Materials, Design

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