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Q & A: airplane wings

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Most recent answer: 07/28/2008
Q:
If an airplane has wings which are totally flat on both sides (upper and lower surface), but with proper angle of attack, will it fly ? Also, if angle of attack is zero and wings have proper curved surface, then will it fly ?
- Vijay (age 38)
Bombay, India
A:
Certainly a flat-wing plane can fly with the proper angle of attack. Stunt planes can even fly upside-down, so they obviously get most or all of their lift from the angle-of-attack.
I'm not sure whether there's enough lift purely from wing curvature to fly a typical light plane. Maybe there's a Wikipedia article going into those details.


Mike W.

(published on 07/28/2008)

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