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I understand that sweeping a wing back reduces the component of velocity perpendicular to the wing and can allow it to travel at subsonic conditions, and reduce the formation of shock waves, even if the freestream velocity is greater. I am wondering if the same concept applies for a forward swept wing or if there are other factors to take into consideration?

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The same rules apply for the forward sweep. But care should be taken since multiple problems can arise. For the forward sweep wing an outer part of the wing can be outside the mach cone of the nose. Also a shock is forming at the wing tip which will influence the other half of the wing (this is a difference in the flow field to the backward swept wing and introduces an interaction of both sides). An Advantage of forward swept wings is, that it is easier to achieve a smooth Crossection Gradient Distribution over the airplane (lower wave drag). This question is really nice! I was trying to find resources and couldn't find any! So any suggestions/corrections are welcome.

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    $\begingroup$ Thanks for your response! You mention that the shock is forming at the wing tip, I am wondering if, because of this opposing spanwise direction of flow that the shock is more important and difficult to control at the inner wing for forward sweep? $\endgroup$
    – Jessica
    Feb 6, 2022 at 18:34
  • $\begingroup$ I don't think i am qualified enough to give you a correct answer. I think the spanwise direction of the flow is not really the problem, but more the interaction of the shocks. It is probably more difficult to control the flow in the inner wing, but what is the advantage of that? Having the ailerons on the outer wing would suggest to me, that having forward swept wings is even advantagous for controlability (disregarding twist). But as mentioned in the beginning, this are just thoughts, and maybe somebody with the proper background can give you a more precise answer. $\endgroup$
    – Artur
    Feb 9, 2022 at 5:03
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The forward swept wings don't flying at supersonic speed, aerodynamic twist (and flutter) are two major issues. Straight wings can't go supersonic how can forward swept do it?

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    $\begingroup$ Incorrect; the X-29 had forward swept wings and a max speed of Mach 1.8. $\endgroup$
    – StephenS
    Jan 31, 2022 at 23:45

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