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Aerodynamics: Selected Topics in the Light of Their Historical Developmentby Theodore Von Karman
Synopses & Reviews
Authoritative and engaging, this popular history traces the science of aerodynamics from the age of Newton through the mid-twentieth century. Author Theodore von Karman, a well-known pioneer in aerodynamic research, addresses himself to readers acquainted with the facts of aviation but less familiar with the field's underlying theories.
A former director of the Aeronautical Laboratory at the California Institute of Technology, von Karman founded the U.S. Institute of Aeronautical Sciences in 1933. In this volume, he employs straightforward, nontechnical language to recount the behind-the-scenes struggles of engineers and physicists with problems associated with lift, drag, stability, aeroelasticity, and the sound barrier. He explains how an increasing understanding of the motion of air and its forces on moving objects enabled significant improvements in airplane design, performance, and safety.
Other topics include the effects of speed on ailerons; the factors behind the phenomenon of a sonic boom; and the plethora of problems surrounding the inception of space travel: surmounting the earth's gravitational field, negotiating a safe return, and sustaining life amid the perils of interstellar radiation, weightlessness, and meteoric activity.
Book News Annotation:
To mark the 50th anniversary of powered flight, Von K<'a>rm<'a>n (1881-1963) set out to provide general readers some idea of the theories underlying flight, and to remind people engaged in the study or professional use of aerodynamic science how much mental effort was necessary to arrive at an understanding of the fundamental phenomena that by his time were readily available. His treatment began as six lectures at Cornell University in March 1953 in the series Messenger Lectures on the Evolution of Civilization. Cornell University Press published the original; this reproduction is of the 1957 second printing.
Annotation ©2004 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
Charmingly written by a pioneer in aerodynamic research, this reader-friendly volume traces the development of dynamic flight from the Newtonian era through the 20th century. 72 figures. 1957 edition.
Charming, reader-friendly chronicle by a famous pioneer in aerodynamic research traces the development of dynamic flight from the time of Newton through the 20th century. It recounts struggles of engineers and physicists with problems associated with lift, drag, stability, aeroelasticity, and the sound barrier. 72 figures. 1957 edition.
Table of Contents
I. Aerodynamic Research before the Era of Flight.
II. The Theory of Lift.
III. Theories of Drag and Skin Friction.
IV. Supersonic Aerodynamics.
V. Stability and Aeroelasticity.
VI. From the Propeller to the Space Rocket.
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