By von Kármán, Theodore
Captivating, reader-friendly chronicle through a well-known pioneer in aerodynamic study strains the improvement of dynamic flight from the time of Newton in the course of the twentieth century. It recounts struggles of engineers and physicists with difficulties linked to elevate, drag, balance, aeroelasticity, and the sound barrier. The e-book includes seventy two figures.
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Extra info for Aerodynamics - Selected Topics in the Light of Their Historical Development
Ref. I 2). Jones is an example of a scientist who has made great contributions to aerodynamics without having the advantage of sys- 55 AERODYNAMICS tematic education leading to a degree. As a matter of fact, he was in college only two semesters; thereafter he had various jobs, including trying to build airplanes for a small company. The depression finished this venture, and he found himself operating an elevator in a government building in Washington. A. on the recommendation of his home-town congressman-a story which is much less dramatic.
If, however, the geometric shape of the surface is given, the solution of the problem of determining the Mt distribution involves great mathematical difficulties, because we have to solve an integral equation containing a double integral, and in this task even the best mathematicians have not helped us much. We aerodynamicists have had to go ahead with our own devices. Such a theory was initiated first in Prandtl’s school by Blenk (Ref. 10). Although a great amount of work has been done on this problem, I cannot go into further discussion here.
The reader may remember that a German enginecr, Anton Flettner (Ref. I), used the Magnus effect to drive a boat by wind power. If a circular cylinder is erected vertically on a boat and made to rotate around its axis, the wind produces a force in a direction essentially perpendicular to the cylinder axis and the direction of the relative wind. Thus a rotating cylinder can replace a sail. Actually, a sail is nothing but an airfoil. Flettner also showed that by rotating two tandem cylinders in opposite directions he could turn a boat around.
Aerodynamics - Selected Topics in the Light of Their Historical Development by von Kármán, Theodore