The Comet's horizontal tail has a noticeably extreme amount of dihedral compared to that of, say, a 707:

Dan-Air Comet (foreground) and 707 (background), showing the very large dihedral of the Comet's tail

(Image by MilborneOne at Wikimedia Commons.)

Note how the Comet's tail has about twice as much dihedral as that of the 707 in the background, especially considering the Comet's quite low wing dihedral.

Why such a large amount of dihedral on the Comet's tail? Does this have anything to do with the Comet's tail being unswept (whereas most later jetliners have horizontal stabilizers that have almost as much sweep as the wings, if not more)?

  • 2
    $\begingroup$ The Comet's engines are in the wing, higher than the 707's pod-mounted engines so I'd guess the dihedral is to keep the elevators out of the engine wake $\endgroup$ – Dave Gremlin Jan 13 at 10:19

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