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Questions tagged [drag]

Aerodynamic drag is the fluid drag force that acts on any moving solid body in the direction of the fluid freestream flow. Part of the drag is the direct consequence of the wing generating lift.

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Acceleration of a supersonic aircraft after breaking the sound barrier

People on the physics stackexchange recommended I ask here, so I am pasting my question regarding supersonic aircraft. I stumbled upon an interesting plot; in particular, the dependence of wave drag ...
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Why is a rectangular wing with winglets not better than an elliptical wing?

Why is a simple rectangular wing with winglets not better than an elliptical wing in terms of induced drag and produced lift?
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does a semi sphere have more drag in comparison to a flat plane with equal surface area?

What the title says, some things to know is that these aren't solid shapes, think of a bowl and a sheet of wood.
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What operational aspects of Alphabet's Wing drone delivery service will be the same as that of an airline?

The NPR News article and podcast FAA Certifies Google's Wing Drone Delivery Company To Operate As An Airline begins with: The Federal Aviation Administration has certified Alphabet's Wing Aviation ...
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Why isn't the bell distribution used?

Why has the bell distribution not become widely used? Is the bell distribution only ideal in inviscid flow scenarios or is there another reason for the lack of use?
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Is drag coefficient lowest at zero angle of attack?

The drag coefficient of a symmetric airfoil is lowest when its angle of attack is zero. I'm not sure if this is true in general.
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Why does a subsonic nacelle inlet have a throat before the diverging section?

Aircraft propulsion 2nd edition by SAEED FAROKHI" p.340 Aircraft propulsion 2nd edition by SAEED FAROKHI" p.123 As we can see from the image, the nacelle slightly converges towards a throat, before ...
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132 views

What is scrub drag?

I've come across the term "scrub drag" in several papers recently, but can't find a detailed definition of this phenomenon. This is specifically in reference to aircraft and seems to apply to engine ...
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139 views

What effect does the angle of attack have on lift and drag?

In general, what effect does the angle of attack have on lift and drag? I understand the the B-25 take-off run was normally in excess of 1500 ft, the exact value dependent upon load, density altitude,...
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124 views

Why does transonic drag happen?

I have heard of transonic speed and it is between supersonic and not supersonic. What is it and why does it happen to aircraft and how does it produce a lot of drag. How do you prevent it from ...
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How does a weak shock-wave boundary-layer interaction create wave drag (other than through direct shock losses)?

I'm trying to understand the physical cause of wave drag, beyond the simple statement "the presence of shockwaves increases the drag". As far as I understand, in the case of a weak BLSWI (so without ...
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Why are the leading edges of wings not always made as 'sharp' as possible?

Why is an airplane's wing (the leading edge) not made as sharp as possible to break the air, in the same way that a ship's hull is made sharp to easily break the water? This is unlike Concorde's nose ...
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How does wing aspect ratio influence lift and drag?

I know simmilar questions are all over the internet (and this website too), but there's one thing that i just cannot comprehend and none of the articles i read could explain it properly. According to ...
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Determine “basic lift distribution” over a wing that has a circulation distribution

I don't understand what they mean with basic lift distribution. I have calculated C_L which is 5a (a is alpha in radians). I added the relevant equations here.
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How do endplates reduce induced drag?

I have heard the explanation which states that the endplates reduce the tip vortex formation thereby reducing induced drag. From what I understand induced drag is the backwards component of the total ...
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145 views

What is the relationship between drag and sink rate?

I was just brushing up on basic aerodynamics and I have something I want to clarify about flying in the region of reverse command. I went up in my 172 the other day and noticed the following while ...
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What is a typical Cd0 value for single-slotted flaps?

I've been having trouble finding any source for what a typical value would be for single-slotted flaps. I haven't been able to find any information within Anderson's Aircraft Performance and Design or ...
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1answer
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Does speed or angle of attack generally have the greatest impact on total induced drag?

I know induced drag varies with speed and angle of attack in straight and level flight. Which factor primarily determines the amount of induced drag? The speed of the airfoil through the air, or the ...
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How to recognize the horizontal winglet in the Horten design, or the experimental glider in this video?

Comments below the NASA Armstrong Flight Research Center video Proving Prandtl- With A Twist! incclude: This video is entirely a hidden jewel in youtube, it deserves much more attention than ...
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What prevents BFS from becoming unstable when pitching from horizontal to vertical?

In this video from (SpaceX's BFS landing) there is a point where the ship tilts from horizontal « belly first » terminal velocity freefall, to vertical « engine first » landing position. The graph ...
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How can drag induced by the landing gear be reduced?

What are some of the methods used to reduce the drag caused by the landing gear for aircraft with non-retractable landing gear?
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Calculating induced drag approximation using XFoil generated parasitic drag

I am trying to do rough predictions of induced drag using the XFoil results for parasitic drag. To do so, I am using the lifting line equation for induced drag and the Oswald efficiency number: $C_D=...
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203 views

How to calculate the induced drag coefficient?

In an exercice of Flight mechanic, I have to compute the drag coefficient at zero lift: $C_{D0}$.We saw in class two ways to find it : $$ C_{D0} = \frac{\pi AR e}{4E_{max}^2} $$ With $AR$ the aspect ...
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What is compressibility drag?

I don't mean wave drag here. What is compressibility drag, which is understood to be a form of miscellaneous drag?
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How can pilots minimize parasite drag?

What can pilots do to minimize parasite drag? As far as I know the effect of parasite drag really depends on the manufacturer of the airplane, but can pilots do anything about it?
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Is winglet height equivalent to duct height?

Winglets increase effective wingspan by causing vorticies to be generated further away from the wing root in proportion to the height of the winglet (if vertical), likewise with winglets on propellers....
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What is the drag (or $C_D$ vs $C_L$) of the Airbus A320 in cruise flight?

Is there any website or data-sheet that I can find drag of airplane for cruise conditions. $C_D$ vs $C_L$ graph is also acceptable. To be more specific I am searching drag values of A320 in cruise ...
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Why do I see moisture coming from the middle of the wing as well as wingtip vortices? [duplicate]

A lot of times I see small tube like streams of visible moisture training from the middle of an airliners wing. I assume this is induced drag created by wingtip vortices, when the aircraft is heavy, ...
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Why does a turbulent boundary layer cause more friction drag than a laminar boundary layer?

From what I understand, friction is caused by viscosity and a bigger Reynolds number signifies lower viscosity. Thus, a higher Reynolds number(i.e. turbulent flow) results in lower friction. But, ...
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How is it possible for supersonic aircraft to push air out of the way?

If the force (pressure) can be transferred/propagated only at the speed of sound, how are supersonic aircraft able to move air out of their way/do work on the air? It seems that they must transfer the ...
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1answer
203 views

How can one approximately guesstimate wave drag?

Wave drag is an especially high drag that affects supersonic vehicles above mach 1, but I've found it hard to find source materials to estimate wave drag. I'm looking at the transonic region till Mach ...
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What are the two turning tendencies that occur during a steep turn?

A question has come up in preparation for a Block exam. what are the two turning tendencies that occur during steep turn? If you know this may you please explain to me, why these tendencies occur. ...
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119 views

Lift and Drag Coefficients using load cell data

I have a MAV and I need to find out the lift and drag coefficients for the wing and tail. I am not available with a wind tunnel so I will be using a load cell along with a separate wind source. Now I ...
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Why don't more airplanes incorporate spiroid winglets? [duplicate]

In typical airplanes, lift induced drag can account for the majority of the overall drag. Why don't more aircraft employ methods to reduce this and specifically why not spiroid winglets? From every ...
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326 views

How does drag change with Reynolds number?

If you want to scale down an airframe, i.e., for wind tunnel testing, you have to adjust for the Reynolds number. I want to ask if in case I forgot to adjust the Reynolds number, would the drag on the ...
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Is lift in fact a kind of drag?

Given the similarities between Lift and drag and their very similar relationships to the density, surface area, and airflow velocity, could one, in theory, describe aerodynamic lift as a kind of drag ...
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Is aspect ratio efficiency related to the momentum added to the air?

Many years ago I was taught that for generating lift or propulsion, lower losses were associated with imparting less momentum change to a larger volume of air, and higher losses were seen when ...
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How do I find experimental Cp, Cd and Cl values for a NACA0012 airfoil? [duplicate]

How can I get experimental Cp, Cd and Cl values for a NACA0012 airfoil where Chord length=240mm and Re=4.6e5? I'm looking for both 2D and 3D airfoil/wing (infinite span). I understand that plenty of ...
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Is it possible to eliminate induced drag completely?

According to Wikipedia an airfoil of infinite length would create zero induced drag. Therefore, would it be possible to make a wing that creates no drag if you ignore viscous effects (skin friction) ...
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Why, until recently, were smooth nose sections not popular?

Why, until recently, were smooth nose sections not popular? By smooth I mean without a break between the nose and windshield. (The question focuses on airliners.) Seeing the Starliner (left) and DC-7 ...
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How significant is the lift induced drag contribution to total drag of aircraft at cruise speed?

How significant is the lift induced drag contribution to total drag of aircraft at cruise speed? From what I've learned so far it seems to be around 10 to 15 percent of total drag. I suspect the ratio ...
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Hypothetical aircraft drag reduction

What would happen if I mounted a system dumping hydrogen (sound velocity 1310 m/s) at the leading edges of an aircraft flying at i.e. mach 2 (ignore all practicality issues)? What would happen at the ...
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354 views

When are winglets most effective?

If winglets reduce induced drag, induced drag is greatest at slow speeds. When are winglets most effictive?
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457 views

Is wing sweep needed on supersonic aircraft?

Area rule states that bodies with the same crossectional area distribution have the same drag. Does that mean I could use a straight wing on mach 1.2 aircraft with performance as high as sweep winged ...
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218 views

Would a lighter aircraft require the same amount of power than a heavier one to fly at the same speed?

I had a question come up: If aircraft A is identical to aircraft B, except that aircraft B weighs 200 kg more. Which of the following statements are true? The answer I selected was wrong: ...
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348 views

Winglet design and airfoil selection

I'm currently in the process of designing a winglet for my low speed aircraft in xflr. While researching about winglets I read in a Boeing article that if the baseline outboard wing is relatively ...
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Can quadcopters save energy by flying in formation?

If two or more quadcopters are aligned, would the effect of drag due to the lead quadcopter's slipstream lead to measurable energy savings? And if so, how would one determine the optimal distance ...
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How would the wave drag of an elongated Sears–Haack body change with a cylindrical mid section?

Would a Sears–Haack body have the same wave drag as the same body with cylinder of the same diameter placed in the middle, between two halves of the Sears–Haack?
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What is formula for induced drag in stalling regime?

I'm wondering what is the formula for induced drag in a stalled regime, i.e. in a regime where the $C_L$ (coef. of. lift) has started to decrease but is still nonzero. I've a feeling that the ...
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When rearranging the lift force equation to solve for lift coefficient instead of lift force, why is the numerator often given as F not 2F?

the standard description of the Lift force affecting the lift surface is: $$ F={\dfrac{1}{2}}\rho v^{2} SC_{L} $$ the basic rearrangement gives the following definition of the lift coefficient: $$ C_{...