A subset of [tag:fluid-dynamics] concerning primarily forces such as lift and drag generated on bodies as they move through gasses or as gasses move through the body (typically air).

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Stagnant Air Deep Inside Vintage Mines

This is really a question more about mining ventilation than true "physics." I occasionally explore a southwest desert mine, but am aware of the hazards - typically passing over half a dozen vintage ...
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0answers
72 views

Why air above airplane's wing moves faster? [duplicate]

One explanation I read: Because of the wing's geometry, the "upper" side of the wing is longer, so the air has to travel faster: My wondering: Who said (and what was his/her explanation) that ...
4
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1answer
580 views

Uses of the Reynolds number

I have seen a lot of places talking about the Reynolds number and how it is calculated, but I have never seen an equation that actually made use of this number to calculate lift, drag, or other ...
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2answers
291 views

What's the advantage of NASA's flying saucer over traditional aerodynamic models?

NASA has recently tested a saucer-shaped spaceship. What's the advantage of this new design over traditional aerodynamic designs? The test launch was performed from within atmosphere which would ...
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2answers
92 views

Does the lift created by a wing change when the slats are deployed?

This is a conceptual question as much as an empirical one, but the question is: Does the lift of a wing change when the slats (or any other leading edge device) are deployed? I am stipulating that the ...
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2answers
84 views

Cause for Power Transmission Tower “Breathing”

OK, this question is not your usual one: Last night while hiking solo from the mountains back to my car at the mountain/desert interface (Lone Pine, CA), I had a rather bizarre -- and downright spooky ...
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1answer
773 views

Effect of Earth's magnetic field on aeroplanes?

As an aeroplane accelerates through the Earth's B-field, it experiences a changing flux $d\phi \over dt$ and a potential difference is induced along its wings. Given the wings are made of metal and ...
4
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1answer
767 views

What is the exact cause of flow separation in a viscous fluid?

I recently got into a lengthy debate about the exact nature of boundary layer separation. In common parlance, we have a tendency to talk about certain geometries as being too "sharp" for a viscous ...
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3answers
136 views

Why doesn't this model plane fly? [closed]

I have been designing a model plane for Design Technology for the past month or so, and today I laser cut my final design and assembled, it then tested it. Upon testing the plane does not get any ...
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2answers
1k views

Why aren't airplanes like golf balls?

Ok this is a silly question but here it goes Although it is good to have a laminar flow of the air around the object for low drag but the laminar flow is prone the phenomena called separation (sounds ...
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3answers
139 views

Why do tropical cyclones not tear themselves apart?

A tropical cyclone is the generic term for a hurricane, typhoon, or tropical storm. Tropical cyclones derive their energy from evaporation of water at the ocean surface which ultimately recondenses ...
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2answers
1k views

Does it make sense to open one window all the way when the other window is much smaller?

I can't wrap my head around this idea because I don't know much about air flows. Say we have this imaginary apartment with two windows, one of which is two times smaller than the other: Will the ...
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2answers
394 views

Why Don't Birds Stall?

I often hear about planes stalling when they lose lift due to low airspeed/too high angle of attack. Why don't birds stall? Does it have to do with the structure of their wings and their flexibility, ...
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5answers
4k views

Why isn't jumping from a high altitude fatal?

After seeing this answer claiming that displacing matter "In a very short time", "no matter whether the matter is solid, liquid, or gas" (even though he concludes that falling from a high altitude is ...
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6answers
16k views

Why is jumping into water from high altitude fatal?

If I jump from an airplane straight positioned upright into the ocean, why is it the same as jumping straight on the ground? Water is a liquid as opposed to the ground, so I would expect that by ...
3
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2answers
172 views

Counter rotating propellers: better in same column or staggered?

In an octo-copter design, is it better to put four pairs of counter-rotating props over each other so that each pair works in a column together? Or will you get more power or efficiency from ...
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2answers
605 views

Does the wing-propeller plane or jet-plane struggle up at the high altitudes because of low pressure?

We all know that wing-propeller planes rely on air to create a thrust. They suck the air in and push them back hard that it's opposite reaction pushes the plane (Newton's law). Does that mean ...
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2answers
463 views

Toy helicopters at very high altitude

Because air is thin up there, toy helicopters usually have a maximum operational altitude. If the toy brought up by a real aircraft, higher than its intended maximum altitude, would it be able to ...
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2answers
81 views

Stratospheric ship

Let's assume that we build a giant steel hull in a shape of cube with open top (2km long edge) and lift it to the top of stratosphere and then pump air out of it. Would it float on the outer layer of ...
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1answer
126 views

Aerodynamics and thermodynamic [closed]

Why can we refer an object as being aerodynamic but we can't refer an object as being thermodynamic, and if an object is thermodynamic what does it even means?
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3answers
1k views

How do birds generate thrust?

I have been watching this video carefully and I want to know how the wings of birds generate thrust. This is because the wings are more or less flapping up and down --- generating the lift. But I do ...
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2answers
50 views

What would be the minimal size of an aerial vehicle capable of sustained suspersonic flight? [closed]

I wonder, what's the smallest possible size for a UAV capable of sustained supersonic flight at the current technology level? Let's say 10 minutes of flight at 1.1 M.
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0answers
196 views

Modal analysis with aerodynamic damping

I'm using modal decomposition to predict the steady state response of a beam structure to harmonic loading. The structure itself is very lightly damped, but we know from experiments that the ...
3
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1answer
84 views

Mathematically impossible for a vortex line to have loose ends?

Could someone show the math behind it? Source : "A vortex is a bunch of air circulating around itself. The axis around which the air is rotating is called a vortex line. It is mathematically ...
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0answers
94 views

Why does air circulate on an airfoil — The Kutta Condition [duplicate]

Why does the air circulate on a flowing airfoil, thus giving rise to increased velocity (circulation + relative airspeed) above the wing and hence decreased pressure.
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3answers
195 views

Turbofan: Efficiency wrt. the bypass ratio: “a lot of slow air > a little faster air”?

Reading / viewing up on how jet engines work, this video explains at the 9:02 mark that, for turbofan engines, ".. it is more aerodynamically efficient to have a lot of air moving relatively slowly ...
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1answer
121 views

Airfoil theory — Why does air travel faster above? [duplicate]

I do not understand, why the air above the airfoil travels faster than the air below it? The air above has to travel faster than the air below so that both streams meet simultaneously at the ...
4
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1answer
108 views

Why do some (older) wind generators have more than three blades?

Based on my personal observations, newer windmills seem to have three blades while older ones tend to have four or even more. This question has excellent discussion on my three is an optimal number. ...
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0answers
41 views

Compute an aerodynamic shape [closed]

I'm interested in building a Fairing for a recumbent bicycle. A fairing is just a rigid curved surface (usually plastic or fiberglass) that surrounds the bike in order to reduce wind drag. Apparently ...
2
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2answers
433 views

Why does a flat clover-like shape fall slower when it is rotating?

The plastic flat clover-like shape pictured below falls noticeably slower when it is rotating fast. I wonder why. Its three edges are flat, so I don't think that the rotation makes it act like a ...
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6answers
52k views

Relation between pressure, velocity and area

In a nozzle, the exit velocity increases as per continuity equation $Av=const$ as given by Bernoulli equation (incompressible fluid). Pressure is inversely proportional to velocity, so we have lower ...
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1answer
158 views

Quadrotor dynamical equations on center of propeller

I work on a quadrotor project. It is commonly wide dynamical model according to the center of quadrotor. However, I need quadrotor dynamic equations on center of one of the propellers. It seems very ...
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4answers
410 views

Is it possible to sky dive without a parachute and land safely?

Let's assume an averaged sized man (1.8 meters height 80 kg) who's sky-diving from a 5000 m height. Let's also assume he's using tight clothes and no parachute. The idea is: Is it possible for him ...
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1answer
2k views

Nose cone design for minimal drag

What formula defines a curve for a nose cone with the minimal possible drag? The nose cone is attached to a cylinder (assume it goes on forever). The volume of the nose cone is not relevant. The ...
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3answers
191 views

Spontaneous motion in a wind tunnel

Suppose that a hollow truncated cone is placed in a wind tunnel with a steady wind speed $V$. The cone is placed in such a way that it's base of area $A_1$ faces the wind (rather than the other side ...
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1answer
94 views

Velocity in the lift equation

What exactly is the nature of the velocity in the lift equation? I have read that it is the velocity of the aircraft, and I think I have read that it is the relative velocity of the air to the ...
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1answer
1k views

Exactly how much lift is needed to overcome the weight of an average person?

I am designing a "glider" of sorts, and I have some basic questions about the physics involved to get me started. How much lift is required to overcome the weight of an average person, say 150 pounds? ...
5
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3answers
5k views

Number of blades in a helicopter rotor

I was wondering how it is possible to determine what is the optimal number of blades in a helicopter rotor. I think that the length of the blade is involved as a longer blades would have to spin ...
21
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1answer
601 views

Causes of hexagonal shape of Saturn's jet stream

NASA has just shown a more detailed picture of the hexagonal vortex/storm on Saturn: http://www.ibtimes.com/nasa-releases-images-saturns-hexagon-mega-storm-may-have-been-swirling-centuries-1496218 ...
2
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2answers
233 views

The criteria for potential flow theory

I am learning aerodynamics. In this course a potential flow is denoted that a flow in which the rotation is zero everywhere. But the book told me that we can add vortex into a flow field, and we can ...
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2answers
2k views

What exactly is the 'lift' of a sailboat as explained by Bernoulli principle

I have heard that when a sailboat is sailing against the wind, it operates on the principle of 'lift'. I am unable to understand the explanation, based on Bernoulli principle, completely. My question ...
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2answers
805 views

Difference resultant aerodynamics force on an airfoil and a flat plate

From basic airfoil theory the following free body diagram can be determined for a two dimensional asymmetric airfoil: Here the direction of the resultant force is governed by the geometry of the ...
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4answers
552 views

How to end up with Newtons in the calculation of the lift force

In another StackExchange Physics question, @Rego had found the following equation to calculate the lift force generated by a simple rectangular blade. $$F = \omega^2 L^2 l\rho\sin^2\phi$$ in ...
5
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2answers
561 views

How can you calculate air resistances at different speeds?

I've read that at 50mph air resistance to an average car is the equivalent of driving through water and at 80mph it's the equivalent of driving through oil. I can't find any references online to ...
3
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1answer
388 views

Why does mini quadcopter doesn't maintain altitude?

I have a mini quadcopter controlled by remote controller. I have set the motors (e.g 50% thrust) it will remain at altitude at 10 cm~ but once I increase to 80% and then follow by decrease to 50% I ...
2
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1answer
308 views

How can electrostatic forces provide lift to the gossamer spider?

I was reading this article entitled "“Ballooning” Spiders Use Electrostatic Forces To Generate Lift". What I would like to know is how can a electrostatically charged object generate lift within the ...
3
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1answer
820 views

What is the physics behind Roger Federer's & Rafael Nadal's iconic shots

Two Iconic players of Tennis, Roger Federer & Rafael Nadal, with two iconic shots. One with a top spin forehand & other with a slice backhand. I want to understand the physics of these two ...
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0answers
251 views

Efficiency estimation for small-scale (~15cm) propellers

First up, apologies if this isn't quite the place for this; Aerospace is still in Area 51 so there doesn't seem to be a better place for it. If it helps, feel free to give theoretical answers and I'll ...
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0answers
288 views

What is wrong with this downforce calculcation?

I tried calculating the downforce of a spoiler I need for a robot. I used this formula. $$F = \frac{1}{2}Ac_a\rho v^2$$ Where $\rho$ is air density, $v$ is the speed of my robot, $c_a$ is the lift ...
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1answer
972 views

Book recommendations for fluid dynamics self study

I have my bachelors degree in engineering science: computer science, option electrotechnic. I have a good understanding of basic mechanics and dynamics, calculus (differential equations). The books ...