alexa Aeronautics

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Aeronautics

Aeronautical engineering can be traced to the early days of mechanical engineering, to inventors’ concepts, and to the initial studies of aerodynamics, a branch of theoretical physics. The earliest sketches of flight vehicles were drawn by Leonardo da Vinci, who suggested two ideas for sustentation. The first was an ornithopter, a flying machine using flapping wings to imitate the flight of birds. The second idea was an aerial screw, the predecessor of the helicopter. Manned flight was first achieved in 1783, in a hot-air balloon designed by the French brothers Joseph-Michel and Jacques-Étienne Montgolfier. Aerodynamics became a factor in balloon flight when a propulsion system was considered for forward movement. Benjamin Franklin was one of the first to propose such an idea, which led to the development of the dirigible. The power-driven balloon was invented by Henri Gifford, a Frenchman, in 1852. The invention of lighter-than-air vehicles occurred independently of the development of aircraft.

 

 
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