LabRat Flight Page

1. Propellers -

Propellers create thrust by imparting momentum to a fluid (i.e. air). This module outlines the details of this momentum transfer concept. One of the companion video provides a simple flow momentum experiment using a small drone. The other companion video shows how to build a simple test apparatus for testing electric airplane motors:

2. Open Bottom Hot Air Balloon -

While simplified explanations on how hot air balloons work are usually based on the idea that "hot air rises", it is actually a little more complicated than that. This module addresses concepts such as atmospheric pressure, heat energy, and pressure gradients to provide the real physics behind hot air balloon flight. The companion video includes various experiments to reinforce the theoretical concepts. The module also includes instructions on how to build your own tissue paper hot air balloon so you can conduct your own experiments:

3. Parachutes -

This module provides information on non-lifting parachutes. It addresses basic parachute physiscs, parachute sizing, the concept of opening loads, and experimental techniques for testing small parachutes:

4. Lift -

This module provides information how the Continuity Equation and Bernoulli's Principle can be used to explain how lift is generated. Videos and demonstrations are provided to reinforce the concepts:

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