What Makes Airplanes Fly?

History, Science, and Applications of Aerodynamics

  • Peter P. Wegener

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-x
  2. Peter P. Wegener
    Pages 25-39
  3. Peter P. Wegener
    Pages 41-46
  4. Peter P. Wegener
    Pages 47-55
  5. Peter P. Wegener
    Pages 57-77
  6. Peter P. Wegener
    Pages 79-86
  7. Peter P. Wegener
    Pages 87-108
  8. Peter P. Wegener
    Pages 109-130
  9. Peter P. Wegener
    Pages 131-144
  10. Peter P. Wegener
    Pages 167-179
  11. Back Matter
    Pages 181-225

About this book


Developed for humanities students at Yale and intended for the general reader interested in flight, this book is about aerodynamics in the broadest sense. To put the science into its social context, the author describes (with many illustrations) the history of human attempts to fly and discusses the outlook for future developments, as well as the social impact of commercial aviation. Although only elementary mathematics is used, the underlying science is discussed rigorously, but clearly, and with an emphasis on the visualizable aspects. Thus readers whose background is not in physics will deepen their knowledge of physics, gain an understanding of what keeps the huge airliners up, and appreciate some of the details of the exciting recent developments in technology.


aerodynamics airplane control development dynamic lift dynamics illustration mathematics physics turbulence

Authors and affiliations

  • Peter P. Wegener
    • 1
  1. 1.Engineering and Applied ScienceYale UniversityNew HavenUSA

Bibliographic information