Tagged: flight

Indirect flight muscles in insects

Of all the things that fly, Insects are possibly the least understood. Their small size and quick movements have made them much more difficult to study, and much of the research about insects has not yet become widely known. One such piece of knowledge that has not yet become common knowledge is the phenomenon of indirect flight.

Ladybugs, a Soft Spot under that Hard Shell

I think it is fair to make the assumption that almost everyone has seen, and perhaps even picked up a lady bug. When not flying, this beetle looks completely harmless, cute even, but when they lift their shell and show off their large, veiny wings, this creature takes on a completely different form. The Ladybug, […]

Evolution of flight : Flying from Gliding

  While many animals are able to fly, birds are the creatures that have mastered flight. They evolved feathers and an aerodynamic body shape. But how exactly did they evolve the ability for complex flight? Were birds first capable of gliding then modified this advantage into powered flight? Or did they begin flapping their wings […]

Quetzalcoatlus: largest flying animal…or not?

Quetzalcoatlus was a type of pterosaur and is one of the largest flying animal of all time, or was it? A study by Sankar Chatterjee, a Texas Tech University professor, claims that the Quetzalcoatlus would not have been able to fly. Instead the pterosaur would soar and glide in a similar fashion as the albatross. Take-off […]

Obstacle avoidance in flying robots

Researchers at Harvard and MIT have been hard at work trying to understand the mechanics of in flight collision avoidance in birds. the goal of this project is to develop small Unmanned Aerial Vehicles that can navigate a forest or urban setting without crashing into trees or buildings, while still being able to fly relatively […]

Flight of the Honeybee

Proponents of intelligent design thought they had this small, yet vastly important, query under their control, or in the bag if you will. The flight of bees, that is. In the mid-1930s, French entomologist August Magnan came to the strikingly weird, yet seemingly true observation, that bees’ flight was aerodynamically impossible. However, most humans have […]

The Albatross-The Master of Dynamic Soaring

The albatross is one of nature’s most interesting creatures. They seem to fly for hours and hours and yet they only flap their wings on rare occasions. The instinct and evolutionary advantage that permits the albatross to decrease the flapping needed to stay in flight is called Dynamic Soaring. The albatross is perhaps the most famous […]