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Number and position of main-planes: Fixed-wing aircraft can have different numbers of wings:
Monoplane - One wing. Most aeroplanes have been monoplanes since the 193 s. !he wing ma" be mounted at various positions relative to the fuselage: Lo in! - Mounted near or below the bottom of the fuselage. Mid in! - Mounted approximatel" half wa" up the fuselage. S"oulder in! - mounted on the upper part or #shoulder# of the fuselage$ either flush with or slightl" below the top of the fuselage. %ometimes treated as distinct from the high wing$ and sometimes described as a high wing where it ma" be regarded as a sub-t"pe. #i!" in! - mounted on the upper fuselage. &hen contrasted to the shoulder wing$ applies to a wing mounted on a pro'ection (such as the cabin roof) above the top of the main fuselage. Parasol in! - mounted on #cabane# struts above the fuselage with a distinct gap between the wing and the fuselage.

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$IPL%NE - !wo wing planes of similar si5e$ stac6ed one above the other. !he most common configuration until the 193 s$ when the monoplane too6 over. !he &right Fl"er + was a biplane. &ne'ual-span biplane - 4 biplane in which one wing (usuall" the lower) is shorter than the other$ as on the 7urtiss 8,-9 8enn" of the First &orld &ar. Ses'uiplane - *iterall" #one-and-a-half planes# is a t"pe of biplane in which the lower wing is significantl" smaller than the upper wing$ either in span or chord or both. In(erted ses'uiplane - /as a significantl" smaller upper wing. !he Fiat 72.1 was in production for man" "ears.


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Sta!!ered plane - 4 staggered design has the upper wing slightl" forward of the lower. *ong thought to reduce the interference caused b" the low pressure air over the lower wing mixing with the high pressure air under the upper wing however the improvement is minimal and its primar" benefit is to improve access to the fuselage. +t is common on man" successful biplanes and triplanes. :ac6wards stagger is also seen in a few examples such as the :eechcraft %taggerwing.

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Triplane - three planes stac6ed one above another. !riplanes such as the Fo66er .r.+ en'o"ed a brief period of popularit" during the First &orld &ar due to their manoeuvrabilit"$ but were soon replaced b" improved biplanes. )uadruplane - four planes stac6ed one above another. 4 small number of the 4rmstrong &hitworth F.=.1 were built in the First &orld &ar but never saw service. Multiplane - man" planes$ sometimes used to mean more than one or more than some arbitrar" number. !he term is occasionall" applied to arrangements stac6ed in tandem as well as verticall". !he 19 > Multiplane of /oratio Frederic6 3hillips flew successfull" with ? wing foils$ while the nine-wing 7aproni 7a.@ fl"ing boat was airborne briefl" before crashing.




Win! Support : !o support itself a wing has to be rigid and strong and conseAuentl" ma" be heav". :" adding
external bracing$ the weight can be greatl" reduced. Originall" such bracing was alwa"s present$ but it causes a large amount of drag at higher speeds and has not been used for faster designs. *antile(ered : self-supporting. 4ll the structure is buried under the aerod"namic s6in$ giving a clean appearance with low drag. $ra+ed : the wings are supported b" external structural members. ,earl" all multi-plane designs are braced. %ome monoplanes$ especiall" earl" designs such as the Fo66er 1indec6er$ are also braced to save weight. :raced wings are of two t"pes: Strut bra+ed - one or more stiff struts help to support the wing. 4 strut ma" act in compression or tension at different points in the flight regime. Wire bra+ed - alone (as on the :oeing 3-?@ 3eashooter) or$ more usuall"$ in addition to struts$ tension wires also help to support the wing. 0nli6e a strut$ a wire can act onl" in tension.

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*ombined or +losed in! : !wo wings are 'oined structurall" at or near the tips in some wa". !his stiffens the structure$ and can reduce aerod"namic losses at the tips. <ariants include: $o, in! - 0pper and lower planes are 'oined b" a vertical fin between their tips. -"omboidal in! - 4 tandem la"out in which the front wing sweeps bac6 and the rear wing sweeps forwards such that the" 'oin at or near the tips to form a continuous surface in a hollow diamond shape.

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%nnular or rin!

in! - ma" refer to various t"pes: Flat in! - the wing is shaped li6e a circular disc with a hole in it. *.lindri+al in! - the wing is shaped li6e a c"linder. !he 7olDoptEre had concentric wing and fuselage. +t too6 off and landed verticall"$ but never achieved transition to hori5ontal flight. 1xamples with the wing mounted on top of the fuselage have been proposed but never built.F@G %nnular bo, in! - 4 t"pe of box wing whose vertical fins curve continuousl"$ blending smoothl" into the wing tips.

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%spe+t ratio : !he aspect ratio is the span divided b" the mean or average chord. +t is a measure of


long and slender the wing appears when seen from above or below. Lo aspe+t ratio - %hort and stubb" wing. More efficient structurall" and higher instantaneous roll rate. !he" tend to be used b" fighter aircraft$ such as the *oc6heed F-1 9 %tar fighter$ and b" ver" high-speed aircraft. Moderate aspe+t ratio - -eneral-purpose wing (e.g. the *oc6heed 3-I %hooting %tar). #i!" aspe+t ratio - *ong and slender wing. More efficient aerod"namicall"$ having less induced drag. !he" tend to be used b" high-altitude subsonic aircraft (e.g. the *oc6heed 0-?)$ subsonic airliners (e.g. the :ombardier .ash I) and b" high-performance sailplanes.

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Win! s eep : &ings ma" be swept bac6$ or occasionall" forwards$ for a variet" of reasons. 4 small
degree of sweep is sometimes used to ad'ust the centre of lift when the wing cannot be attached in the ideal position for some reason$ such as a pilotJs visibilit" from the coc6pit. Strai!"t - %traight wing extends at right angles to the line of flight. !he most efficient structurall"$ and common for low-speed designs. S ept ba+/ - (references to #swept# often assume swept bac6). From the root$ the wing angles bac6wards towards the tip. +n earl" tailless examples$ such as the .unne aircraft$ this allowed the outer wing section to act as a conventional tail empennage to provide aerod"namic stabilit". 4t transonic speeds swept wings have lower drag$ but can handle badl" in or near a stall and reAuire high stiffness to avoid aeroelasticit" at high speeds. 7ommon on high-subsonic and earl" supersonic designs. For ard s ept - !he wing angles forward from the root. :enefits are similar to bac6wards sweep$ also it avoids the stall problems and has reduced tip losses allowing a smaller wing$ but reAuires even greater stiffness to avoid aeroelastic flutter. %ometimes also done in order to avoid having the wing spar pass through the cabin.

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0ariable !eometr. in! : !his can be classified into two t"pes such asK
S in!- in! - %wing-wing also called #variable sweep wing#. !he left and right hand wings var" their sweep together$ usuall" bac6wards. %een in a few t"pes of militar" aircraft$ such as the -eneral ."namics F-111. Obli'ue in! - ObliAue wing - a single full-span wing pivots about its midpoint$ so that one side sweeps bac6 and the other side sweeps forward. Flown on the ,4%4 4.-1 research aircraft.

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Planform (ariation alon! span : !he wing chord ma" be varied along the span of the wing$ for both
structural and aerod"namic reasons. Ellipti+al - *eading andLor trailing edges are curved such that the chord length varies ellipticall" with respect to span. !heoreticall" the most efficient$ but difficult to ma6e. Famousl" used on the %upermarine %pitfire. !he wings of the %evers6" 3-3M were semi-elliptical having a straight leading edge and progressivel" curved trailing edge. (,ote that in aerod"namics theor"$ the term #elliptical# describes the optimal lift distribution over a wing and not the shape). *onstant +"ord - 3arallel leading N trailing edges. %implest to ma6e$ and common where low cost is important$ e.g. in the 3iper 8-3 7ub but inefficient as the outer section generates little lift. %ometimes 6nown as the /ershe" :ar wing in ,orth 4merica due to its similarit" in shape to a chocolate bar. Tapered B &ing narrows towards the tip$ with straight edges. %tructurall" and aerod"namicall" more efficient than a constant chord wing$ and easier to ma6e than the elliptical t"pe. +t is one of the most common wing planforms$ as seen on the -rumman F@F /ellcat. Trape1oidal - a low aspect ratio tapered wing$ where the leading edge sweeps bac6 and the trailing edge sweeps forwards as on the *oc6heed F-?? 2aptor.

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In(erse tapered - &ing is widest near the tip. %tructurall" inefficient$ leading to high weight. Flown experimentall" on the CF-91.!hunderceptor in an attempt to overcome the stall problems of swept wings. *ompound tapered - !aper reverses towards the root. !"picall" braced to maintain stiffness. 0sed on the &estland *"sander arm" cooperation aircraft to increase visibilit" for the pilot.

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2elta Win! - .elta triangular planform with swept leading edge and straight trailing edge. Offers the
advantages of a swept wing$ with good structural efficienc" and low frontal area. .isadvantages are the low wing loading and high wetted area needed to obtain aerod"namic stabilit". <ariants are: Tailless delta - 4 classic high-speed design$ used for example in the widel" built .assault Mirage +++ series. Tailed delta - +t adds a conventional tailplane$ to improve handling. 3opular on %oviet t"pes such as the Mi6o"an--urevich Mi--?1. *ropped delta B !he tip is cut off. !his helps avoid tip drag at high angles of attac6. 4t the extreme$ merges into the #tapered swept# configuration. *ompound delta or double delta B +ts inner section has a (usuall") steeper leading edge sweep e.g. %aab .ra6en. !his improves the lift at high angles of attac6 and dela"s or prevents stalling. %een in tailless form on the !upolev !u-199. !he /4* !e'as has an inner section of reduced sweep. O!i(al delta - 4 smoothl" blended #wineglass# double-curve encompassing the leading edges and tip of a cropped compound delta. %een in tailless form on the 7oncorde supersonic transports.

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0ariation of %n!le of s ept in! :

+t can be classified into four t"pes such asK

*res+ent - &ing outer section is swept less sharpl" than the inner section. 0sed for the /andle" 3age <ictor. *ran/ed arro - %imilar to a compound delta$ but with the trailing edge also 6in6ed inwards. !rialled experimentall" on the -eneral ."namics F-1@C*. M- in! - !he inner wing section sweeps forward$ and the outer section sweeps bac6wards. 3eriodicall" studied$ but never used on an aircraft. W- in! - 4 reversed M-wing. %tudied even less than the M-wing and li6ewise never used.

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!he classic aerofoil section wing is unstable in pitch$ and reAuires some form of hori5ontal stabili5ing surface. 4lso it cannot provide an" significant pitch control$ reAuiring a separate control surface (elevator) mounted elsewhere. *on(entional B !he #tailplane# surface at the rear of the aircraft$ forming part of the tail or empennage. *anard B !he #foreplane# surface at the front of the aircraft. 7ommon in the pioneer "ears$ but from the outbrea6 of &orld &ar + no production model appeared until the %aab <iggen. !his model introduced the use of a close-coupled canard to help direct airflow over the wing at high angles of attac6 rather than provide d"namic stabilit" or control. Tandem B !he two main wings$ one behind the other. !he two act together to provide stabilit" and both provide lift. 4n example is the 2utan ;uic6ie. 4ccording to ,4%4 research$ the wings must differ in aerod"namic characteristics or the aircraft will tend to oscillate in pitch. 1ither span$ chord or wing section must be different between the two wings. T"ree liftin! surfa+e Or Triplet B +t used to describe t"pes having both conventional tail and canard auxiliar" surfaces. Modern examples include the %u6hoi %u-33 and 3iaggio 3.1I 4vanti. 3ioneer examples included the <oisin-Farman + and 7urtiss ,o. 1$ however historicall" the smaller planes were not regarded as part of the main wing arrangement and these were not understood as three surface t"pes. %ometimes incorrectl" referred to as a tandem triplane. Tailless B +ts has no separate surface$ at front or rear. !he lifting and stabili5ing surfaces ma" be combined in a single plane$ as on the %hort %:.9 %herpa whose whole wing tip sections acted as elevons. 4lternativel" the aerofoil profile ma" be modified to provide inherent stabilit". 4ircraft having a tailplane but no vertical tail fin have also been described as #tailless#.

Tailplane and foreplane desi!n :

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2i"edral and an"edral

in! : 4ngling the wings up or down spanwise from root to tip can help

to resolve various design issues$ such as stabilit" and control in flight. 2i"edral - the tips are higher than the root as on the :oeing >3>$ giving a shallow J<J shape when seen from the front. 4dds lateral stabilit". %n"edral - the tips are lower than the root$ as on the +l"ushin +l->@K the opposite of dihedral. 0sed to reduce stabilit" where some other feature results in too much stabilit". %ome biplanes have different degrees of dihedralLanhedral on different wingsK e.g. the %opwith 7amel had a flat upper wing and dihedral on the lower wing$ while the /anriot /.-1 had dihedral on the upper wing but none on the lower.

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Pol."edral in! : +t can be classified into five t"pes such asK

Gull in! - !he sharp dihedral on the wing root section$ little or none on the main section$ as on the 3O* 3.11 fighter. %ometimes used to improve visibilit" forwards and upwards and ma" be used as the upper wing on a biplane as on the 3oli6arpov +-1M3. In(erted !ull B !he anhedral on the root section$ dihedral on the main section. !he opposite of a gull wing. Ma" be used to reduce the length of wing-mounted undercarriage legs or allow a larger propeller. !wo well-6nown examples of the inverted gull wing are &orld &ar ++Js 4merican F90 7orsair$ and the -erman 8un6ers 8u I> %tu6a dive bomber.

*ran/ed - tip section dihedral differs from the main section. !he wingtips ma" cran6 upwards as on the F-9 3hantom ++ or downwards as on the ,orthrop C3-M@ :lac6 :ullet. (,ote that the term #cran6ed# varies in usage. /ere$ it is used to help clarif" the relationship between changes of dihedral nearer the wing tip vs. nearer the wing root. %ee also 7ran6ed arrow planform.) *"annel in! - !he channel wing includes a section of the wing forming a partial duct around or immediatel" behind a propeller. Flown since 199? in protot"pe form onl"$ most notabl" on the 7uster 7hannel &ing aircraft.

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Win!s (s3 bodies : %ome designs have no clear 'oin between wing and fuselage$ or bod". !his ma" be
because one or other of these is missing$ or because the" merge into each other:! in! - !he aircraft has no distinct fuselage or hori5ontal tail (although fins and pods$ blisters$ etc. ma" be present) such as on the :-? stealth bomber. $lended bod. or blended in!-bod. - 4 smooth transition occurs between wing and fuselage$ with no hard dividing line. 2educes wetted area and can also reduce interference between airflow over the wing root and an" ad'acent bod"$ in both cases reducing drag. !he *oc6heed %2->1 sp"plane exemplifies this approach. Liftin! bod. - !he aircraft lac6s identifiable wings but relies on the fuselage (usuall" at high speeds or high angles of attac6) to provide aerod"namic lift as on the C-?9.

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