In little more than 100 years, aviation has passed from a ground-hugging flight of less than a minute to high-altitude, supersonic flights that cross continents and oceans. This course surveys the history of aviation and the technological innovations that led to this crucial modern technology. This course also discusses the physics of flight, how increased understanding of aerodynamic principles led to successive aircraft improvements, and the development of new materials and control systems. Although military research drove many technological innovations, this course focuses on the economics and development of commercial aviation, which has changed the world. The course also looks at ultramodern trends in aircraft design and control, including unmanned cruise missiles and aircraft, and new commercial-aircraft designs and production techniques.
Prerequisites: Completion of first year writing requirements. Co-requisites: None. Notes: Satisfies a HuSS elective.