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Atmospheric Flight

9-12 Grade Reading

a photo of Earth from space

Table of Contents

  1. Introduction
  2. Gravity and Atmosphere
  3. Atmospheric Pressure
  4. Buoyancy
  5. The Four Forces
  6. Aerodynamic Lift
  7. Drag
  8. Propulsion
  9. Trim, Stability and Control
  10. Structure
  11. A Word About Packaging
  12. Summing Up Atmospheric Flight


Sustained, controlled flight is possible due to such factors as forces that act on an airplane (weight, lift, thrust, and drag), control surfaces that change airflow affecting motion, and wing shapes and thickness. What makes all of these possible, though, are air molecules. Air molecules held within our atmosphere that are held around a planet or satellite by gravity.

Planetary Flight Home Page


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