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Newton's and Bernoulli's Physics of Flight

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The Physics of Flight
A brief look at Newton’s Laws of Motion and Bernoulli’s Principle of Pressure
Celia Lowman
12/5/2013
The Physics of Flight
A brief look at Newton’s Laws of Motion and Bernoulli’s Principle of Pressure
Celia Lowman
12/5/2013

When I was a child I was obsessed with miniature wooden and paper airplanes, I was always gluing Popsicle sticks and clothes pins together or making my mother mad by using all the printer paper on new airplane designs. The thing that fascinated me was that I could never fully grasp what made them glide in the air the way that they do but never fly. In my mind the small plane should have flown better than a 100,000 lb. metal object. It wasn’t until I was older and had my first physical science class that I really started to get a grasp on what was really going on to make something that large liftoff and continue to fly. There are two names that stand out when speaking about the physics of flight: Sir Isaac Newton and Daniel Bernoulli. Without them there would be far less understanding of the forces of flight and the physics behind the art of flying.
Sir Issac Newton was a mathematician and physicist who transformed the scientific world in 1666 with the development of the theories of gravitation at the young age of 23. Twenty years later in 1686, Newton published Principia Mathematics Philosophiae Naturalis, Latin for “Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy”, which detailed his work in mathematical physics and presented his three laws of motion. His first law is commonly known as the law of Inertia, and it states “A body in motion at a constant speed will remain in motion at that speed unless acted upon by outside force; A body at rest will remain at rest unless acted upon by...

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