What is Flight ?

Flight dynamics (spacecraft)
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
For other uses, see Flight (disambiguation).

A hummingbird in flight

A Barn Swallow in flight
Flight is the process by which an object moves, through an atmosphere (especially the air) or
beyond it (as in the case of spaceflight), by generating aerodynamic lift, propulsive
thrust, aerostatically using buoyancy, or byballistic movement, without direct support from any
Many things fly, from natural aviators such as birds, bats and insects to human inventions such
as missiles, aircraft such as airplanes, helicopters and balloons, to rockets such as spacecraft.
The engineering aspects of flight are studied in aerospace engineering which is subdivided
into aeronautics, the study of vehicles that travel through the air, and astronautics, the study of
vehicles that travel through space, and in ballistics, the study of the flight of projectiles.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
This article is about flight dynamics for spacecraft. For aircraft flight dynamics, see Flight dynamics
(aircraft) . For attitude control of spacecraft, see Attitude control (spacecraft).
Spacecraft flight dynamics is the science of space vehicle performance, stability, and control. It
requires analysis of the six degrees of freedom of the vehicle's flight, which are similar to those of
aircraft: translation in three dimensional axes; and its orientation about the vehicle's center of mass
in these axes, known as pitch, roll and yaw, with respect to a defined frame of reference.
Dynamics is the modeling of the changing position and orientation of a vehicle, in response to
external forces acting on the body. For a spacecraft, these forces are of three types: propulsive force
(usually provided by the vehicle's engine thrust); gravitational force exerted by the Earth or other
celestial bodies; and aerodynamic lift and drag (when flying in the atmosphere of the Earth or other
body, such as Mars or Venus). The vehicle's attitude must be taken into account because of its
effect on the aerodynamic and propulsive forces.
There are other reasons, unrelated to flight
dynamics, for controlling the vehicle's attitude in non-powered flight (e.g., thermal control, solar
power generation, communications, or astronomical observation).
The principles of flight dynamics are normally used to control a spacecraft by means of an inertial
navigation system in conjunction with an attitude control system. Together, they create a subsystem
of the spacecraft bus often called ADCS
. n.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flight_dynamics_(spacecraft)
Types of flight
Buoyant flight[edit]
Main article: Aerostat

A blimp flies because the upward force is equal or greater than the force of gravity.
Humans have managed to construct lighter than air vehicles that raise off the ground and fly, due to
their buoyancy in air.
An aerostat is a system that remains aloft primarily through the use of buoyancy to give an aircraft
the same overall density as air. Aerostats include free balloons, airships, and moored balloons. An
aerostat's main structural component is its envelope, a lightweight skin containing a lifting gas
provide buoyancy, to which other components are attached.
Aerostats are so named because they use "aerostatic" lift, a buoyant force that does not require
lateral movement through the surrounding air mass. By contrast, aerodynes primarily
use aerodynamic lift, which requires the lateral movement of at least some part of
the aircraft through the surrounding air mass.
Aerodynamic flight[edit]
Unpowered flight versus powered flight[edit]
Main article: Unpowered flight
Some things that fly do not generate propulsive thrust through the air, for example, the flying
squirrel. This is termed gliding. Some other things can exploit rising air to climb such
as raptors (when gliding) and man-made sailplane gliders. This is termed soaring. However most
other birds and all powered aircraft need a source of propulsion to climb. This is termed powered

Female Mallard Duck

Tau Emerald dragonfly

Main article: Flying and gliding animals
The only groups of living things that use powered flight are birds, insects, and bats, while many
groups have evolved gliding. The extinct Pterosaurs, an order of reptiles contemporaneous with
the dinosaurs, were also very successful flying animals. Each of these
groups' wings evolved independently. The wings of the flying vertebrate groups are all based on the
forelimbs, but differ significantly in structure; those of insects are hypothesized to be highly modified
versions of structures that form gills in most other groups of arthropods.

Bats are the only mammals capable of sustaining level flight.
However, there are several gliding
mammals which are able to glide from tree to tree using fleshy membranes between their limbs;
some can travel hundreds of meters in this way with very little loss in height. Flying frogs use greatly
enlarged webbed feet for a similar purpose, and there are flying lizards which fold out their mobile
ribs into a pair of flat gliding surfaces. "Flying" snakesalso use mobile ribs to flatten their body into an
aerodynamic shape, with a back and forth motion much the same as they use on the ground.
Flying fish can glide using enlarged wing-like fins, and have been observed soaring for hundreds of
meters. It is thought that this ability was chosen by natural selection because it was an effective
means of escape from underwater predators. The longest recorded flight of a flying fish was 45

Most birds fly (see bird flight), with some exceptions. The largest birds, the Ostrich and the Emu, are
earthbound, as were the now-extinct Dodos and the Phorusrhacids, which were the dominant
predators of South America in the Cenozoic era. The non-flying penguins have wings adapted for
use under water and use the same wing movements for swimming that most other birds use for
[citation needed]
Most small flightless birds are native to small islands, and lead a lifestyle where
flight would offer little advantage.
Among living animals that fly, the Wandering Albatross has the greatest wingspan, up to 3.5 meters
(11 feet); the Great Bustard has the greatest weight, topping at 21 kilograms (46 pounds).

Many species of insects also fly (See insect flight).
Main article: Aviation

Mechanical flight: A Robinson R22Beta helicopter
Mechanical flight is the use of a machine to fly. These machines include aircraft such
as airplanes, gliders, helicopters, autogyros, airships, balloons, ornithopters as well
as spacecraft. Gliders are capable of unpowered flight. Another form of mechanical flight is para-
sailing where a parachute-like object is pulled by a boat. In an airplane, lift is created by the wings;
the shape of the wings of the airplane are designed specially for the type of flight desired. There are
different types of wings: tempered, semi-tempered, sweptback, rectangular and elliptical. An aircraft
wing is sometimes called an airfoil, which is a device that creates lift when air flows across it.
Main article: Supersonic speed
Supersonic flight is flight faster than the speed of sound. Supersonic flight is associated with the
formation of shock waves that form a sonic boom that can be heard from the ground,
and is
frequently startling. This shockwave takes quite a lot of energy to create and this makes supersonic
flight generally less efficient than subsonic flight at about 85% of the speed of sound.
Main article: Hypersonic speed
Hypersonic flight is very high speed flight where the heat generated by the compression of the air
due to the motion through the air causes chemical changes to the air. Hypersonic flight is achieved
by reentering spacecraft such as the Space Shuttle and Soyuz.

The International Space Station in earth orbit
Main article: Ballistics
Some things generate little or no lift and move only or mostly under the action of momentum, gravity,
air drag and in some cases thrust. This is termed ballistic flight. Examples
include balls, arrows, bullets, fireworks etc.
Main article: Spaceflight
Essentially an extreme form of ballistic flight, spaceflight is the use of space technology to achieve
the flight of spacecraft into and through outer space. Examples include ballistic missiles, orbital
spaceflight etc.
Spaceflight is used in space exploration, and also in commercial activities like space
tourism and satellite telecommunications. Additional non-commercial uses of spaceflight
include space observatories, reconnaissance satellitesand other earth observation satellites.
A spaceflight typically begins with a rocket launch, which provides the initial thrust to overcome the
force of gravity and propels the spacecraft from the surface of the Earth. Once in space, the motion
of a spacecraft—both when unpropelled and when under propulsion—is covered by the area of
study called astrodynamics. Some spacecraft remain in space indefinitely, some disintegrate
during atmospheric reentry, and others reach a planetary or lunar surface for landing or impact.
Who invented flight and what’,s it purpose?
Wright brothers
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
The Wright brothers

Orville and Wilbur Wright in 1905
Born Orville: August 19, 1871, Dayton, Ohio
Wilbur: April 16, 1867, Millville, Indiana
Died Orville: January 30, 1948 (aged 76), Dayton
Wilbur: May 30, 1912 (aged 45), Dayton
Ethnicity German, Dutch, English, Swiss
Occupation Orville: Printer/publisher, bicycle
retailer/manufacturer, airplane inventor/manufacturer,
pilot trainer
Wilbur: Editor, bicycle retailer/manufacturer, airplane
inventor/manufacturer, pilot trainer
Spouse(s) None (both)

The Wright brothers, Orville (August 19, 1871 – January 30, 1948) and Wilbur (April 16, 1867 –
May 30, 1912), were two American brothers, inventors, and aviation pioneers who were
with inventing and building the world's first successful airplane and making the first
controlled, powered and sustained heavier-than-air human flight, on December 17, 1903. From 1905
to 1907, the brothers developed their flying machine into the first practical fixed-wing aircraft.
Although not the first to build and fly experimental aircraft, the Wright brothers were the first to invent
aircraft controls that made fixed-wing powered flight possible.
The brothers' fundamental breakthrough was their invention of three-axis control, which enabled the
pilot to steer the aircraft effectively and to maintain its equilibrium.
This method became and
remains standard on fixed-wing aircraft of all kinds.
From the beginning of their aeronautical
work, the Wright brothers focused on developing a reliable method of pilot control as the key to
solving "the flying problem". This approach differed significantly from other experimenters of the time
who put more emphasis on developing powerful engines.
Using a small homebuilt wind tunnel, the
Wrights also collected more accurate data than any before, enabling them to design and build wings
and propellers that were more efficient than any before.
Their first U.S. patent, 821,393, did not
claim invention of a flying machine, but rather, the invention of a system of aerodynamic control that
manipulated a flying machine's surfaces.

They gained the mechanical skills essential for their success by working for years in their shop with
printing presses, bicycles, motors, and other machinery. Their work with bicycles in particular
influenced their belief that an unstable vehicle like a flying machine could be controlled and balanced
with practice.
From 1900 until their first powered flights in late 1903, they conducted extensive
glider tests that also developed their skills as pilots. Their bicycle shop employee Charlie
Taylor became an important part of the team, building their first airplane engine in close
collaboration with the brothers.
The Wright brothers' status as inventors of the airplane has been subject to counter-claims by
various parties. Much controversy persists over the many competing claims of early aviators.