Sep 21, 2009

Secrets of Insect Flight and Aerodynamics revealed

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Scientists have been studying the insect flight in order to develop micro-aircraft modeled around the aerodynamics the insect use for high maneuverability and efficiency. In this important case it is Locusts, known to be nature's most efficient fliers with the capability of flying long distances under extremely low energy reserves.

The idea for developing micro-aircraft for such a flight arises out of the need to control the situations involving search and rescue, military and other hazardous environments.

Scientists have been successfully able to decode the aerodynamics of the Locusts using high speed digital camera's on Locusts flying in a wind tunnel to capture how the Locust's wings flap during the flight, this is the first time ever that engineers have been able to decode the most efficient fliers, Locusts.

The study appears in the sep 18 issue of the journal Science.

"Until very recently it hasn't been possible to measure the actual shape of an insect's wings in flight – partly because their wings flap so fast, and partly because their shape is so complicated.

"Locusts are an interesting insect for engineers to study because of their ability to fly extremely long distances on very limited energy reserves." - Dr John Young of the University of New South Wales, Australia.

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