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Recently I came across this article ---> http://www.popsci.com/article/technology/rise-insect-drones <---, detailing the success of engineers/researchers to mimic insect flight, for potential application in insect drones. In short, the article details how the flight of insects was previously misunderstood - based on our conventional notions of flight they were unable to generate the lift to stay aloft - and now, with better study into concepts into "wake absorption" and other fancy flying terms, we're able to mimic an insect's flight to produce the highly efficient lift that they create. I would recommend reading it. The topic on it's own is fascinating. Personally I think robotic bugs are cool. But I also think that the potentials for the new forms of flight they're able to reproduce are also quite interesting. Who knows: modifications on stuff like this could be used in larger scales drones, or maybe even better human powered flight. This all may be unfeasible - I'm no aeronautic engineer - but it's cool to think about nonetheless.
This March, the F-35 Lightning II made its first public demonstration at an air show. The U.S. Military is expected to purchase over a thousand of the new jets in total, eventually being put in service with the Navy, Air Force, and Marine Corps. The Air Force version, the F-35A, will be the lightest and most agile. The thrust to weight ratio is over one, meaning that the engine produces more thrust (191 kN!) than the weight of the aircraft. In other words, it is able to speed up while flying 90 degrees to the ground...straight up. The Marine Corps version, the F-35B, is the most powerful, in that it has a specialized engine. The thrust can be vectored down to "push" the aircraft off the ground, therefore allowing the aircraft to take off in ridiculously short distances (perfect for the Marines' shortened aircraft carriers) Lastly, the Naval version, the F-35C, has a larger wing area and strengthened landing gear for landing on an aircraft carrier. The wing area is increased simply because this version will have to fly very slow on final, meaning more lift is needed to keep the aircraft from entering an aerodynamic stall. The increased wing area provides more lifting surface area, so (by Bernoulli's principle), more air will flow over the airfoil, inducing a greater low pressure area over the wing. More lift is then created, allowing this model to control itself as very low airspeeds.
Boomerangs to some can be quite mysterious. One may ask, "why do they fly the way they do?" But fear not, for I'm here to explain them to you. At first glance, a boomerang might appear flat to the unsuspecting eye. But alas, for a boomerang to return to your hand, it must actually act a bit like a helicopter rotor, with one side angled up one way and the other the other way, so that when it spins it creates lift. But when you think of a helicopter, you think of something going up and down, not around in a circle. What you don't consider is that lateral movement of the boomerang cause air to flow past one side of the boomerang faster than the other as it rotates, create unequal lift, causing it to turn (this means two things: one, boomerangs are thrown vertically/almost vertically as opposed to horizontally, because that would cause more of a loop-de-loop, and it also displays one of the major shortcomings of single-rotor helicopters: they suffer from this same issue). It continues to turn as it flies, eventually creating the loop we all know and love. So if you're making a boomerang, keep this in mind: angle the fins. And for legal purposes I do not support the use of boomerangs as a projectile weapon. Thank you and goodnight.