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Wright Brothers - Research Paper Example

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The 19th and 20 centuries witnessed sustained efforts to design and develop flight. Human beings were realizing the increasing need for flight to facilitate human transport in the air in a more convenient and faster way…
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Wright Brothers
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Download file to see previous pages While the efforts to design and develop flight can be traced to periods before the 19th century when humans were imitating birds in flight, it is 19th century and early periods of 20th century, which witnessed real and tangible efforts that culminated to controlled and powered flight (Helfand and Banerjee, 2011). Subsequent years have seen rapid advancement in the aviation industry with better and advanced flights being developed. These flights have advanced technological capabilities and comfort. They are more comfortable, fast, and come with more attractive designs. The quest to realize controlled and powered flight began in earnest in 1891 when Otto Lilienthal worked to design a glider that can fly (Dixon-Engel and Jackson, 2007). He was the first person to design a glider that would fly a person, as well as being able to fly relatively long distances. He studied aerodynamics and he wrote a book that was later used by the Wright Brothers in their designs. The year 1891also saw Samuel Langley building a plane model called aerodrome. Although his efforts to develop a powered flight failed, he made important contributions that would help in developing powered flight in the future particularly by Wright Brothers (Anderson, 2004). In 1894, Octave Chanute undertook the invention of airplanes after being inspired by Otto Lilienthal. He designed several aircraft; the Herring was a particular aircraft that he designed and was the most successful deign and was the basis for the design of Wright biplane (Howard, 1998). He also published a book in 1894 called “Progress in Flying Machines”. This book contained all the technical knowledge about aviation at that time. The Wright Brothers this book as the basis of their experiments. It is important to note that Chanute was in constant contact with the Wright Brothers and made regular comments on their technical progress. Wilbur Wright and Orville Wright were deliberate in their quest for flight as evidenced by the fact that they spent many years learning all the early flight developments (Dixon-Engel and Jackson, 2007). They also read all the literature published up to that time about flight. Because of the knowledge that they acquired by reading and learning about flight, they started to test the early theories with kites and balloons. They also spent considerable amounts of time in learning and testing the shapes of gliders and how gliders could be controlled. The year 1903 witnessed a breakthrough in design and development of flight (O'Hern and Mayo, 2006). Wright Brothers were the first to sustain controlled flight, powered flight. Wright Brothers are the two American brothers who are credited as the earliest successful aviation inventors and pioneers. They are credited with inventing and developing the first successful airplane in the world, as well as making the first sustained, controlled, and powered heavier-than-air human flight on 17 December 1903 (Howard, 1998). Historians agree that even though the Wright Brother were not the first in building and flying experimental aircraft, they were the first in inventing aircraft controls that made possible the fixed-wing powered flight. In particular, they achieved a major breakthrough that other inventors had not achieved; they invented a three-axis control that enable the pilot to effectively steer the aircraft and at the same time maintain the aircraft’s equilibrium (O'Hern and Mayo, 2006). The significance of this method became standard in aviation and remains standard mainly on all kinds of fixed-wing aircraft. While the experimenters of the time were emphasizing on developing powerful aircraft engines, the Wright Brothe ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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