Aircraft 01

OPENING QUESTION: Sketch an aircraft with a fuselage (body) of at least 6".

Now show lift

Now show weight

Chances are you chose to show lift occurring right above the wings

Chances are you chose to show weight right at the middle of the aircraft

Why are each of those REALLY important to flight?


LEARNING GOAL FOR TODAY: I will be able to show why an aircraft's center of mass is so important to the flight of that aircraft.


Take a gander at this image of a plane (courtesy of NASA)

There's a whole bunch of oddball math there... but take a swing at seeing if you can make sense out of what their trying to do there.

Now let's take a meter stick and some weights and see if we can get a more hands on feeling for this idea of center of mass.


Before we start designing and drawing your 3d plane (this will be your BIGGEST and most difficult building project of the term), why will it be SOOOO important to take into account the aircraft COM?