Is the power needed to make a plane fly similar in proportion to the power needed for birds to fly?



  1. 0 Votes

    No probably not — planes require a lot more power than birds do. Airplanes are made of much heavier materials than birds (with their semi-porous bones)… therefore a lot more energy is required to create the lift necessary to get an airplane in the air, compared to the power input for a bird. Birds can take off at much lower speeds, because their wings are not fixed; whereas planes have to get going very, very fast for the air to be going over it fast enough that the low pressure above the wing and the high pressure below it will create the lift necessary for takeoff. Google “bernoulli’s principle” for some great images and links to pages on this phenomenon that we take advantage of to achieve flight! Also, birds can stop flapping their wings when they realize they don’t need them (and they glide!) whereas planes just keep their engines running the whole time their up there in the air (which is pretty wasteful, but necessary to ensure safety i guess…) Birds rule (at flying), therefore we should look to them for inspiration (in efficiency and conservation strategies— like utilizing Glide/ free lift caused by rising wind patterns!) Also, google gliders if you want to read some pretty cool stuff about flight and utilizing free energy!

Please signup or login to answer this question.

Sorry,At this time user registration is disabled. We will open registration soon!