Why do flaps retract? I know, it might seem obvious at first, because of drag, but instead of retracting the flaps, can't they just make the flaps flexible enough to get into a reduced drag position, and act like an extended wing?
Maybe there is a reason we should look into this technology, since it could really help out in terms of climb rate. Or, was this already looked at, but engineers decided something was wrong about it, and threw the idea away?
And by the way most of the answers involved automatic retraction of the flaps, even though I never said anything about making the flaps being automatic. Just a disclaimer.