Vulture Outperforms Man

Posted by Scripture on Sep. 12, 2009

Aerodynamics, the science of flight, is a highly complex science. This is because many complex forces are acting on anything in flight. These forces include the power available for flight and drag produced by the flying object. Each of these categories includes many additional forces that depend on the shape of the flying object, the shape and length of the wings, the speed and the altitude. This is why, for example, high altitude planes have very long wings. One critical force that has been under recent study is the turbulence that forms at the tips of the wings. The shorter the wing, the more energy-consuming turbulence forms at the tip of the wing. Different wing designs have been tried to decrease this turbulence. Engineers have had some success reducing this turbulence with winglets. You may have seen these small vertical wings on the wingtips of some airplanes. Swiss researchers have been studying vultures with the hope of finding a better solution to this problem because vultures have a relatively shor

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