Category: Student post


When you think of the word hovering, most people think of a hummingbird because of its flight traits. The hummingbird hawk moth, also known as the Macroglossum Stellatarum has a flight pattern very similar to the hummingbird, which is an excellent hovering animal.

To Fly Or Not to Fly? The Infamous Tale of Bumblebees

Many people have heard the tale of bumblebees not being able to fly. How could this be possible? This little white lie was created without any documentation of who made the calculation and when.

Benefits of Quad-Rotor Electric Craft

Birds capable of hovering has always been a unique and sought out feature that humans have been trying to emulate in our equipment. This hovering capability has finally been successfully captured and implemented with quad-rotor electric craft that have only come out in the past few years in vehicles such as Cyber Technology (WA) Pty […]

Colugos: The Geometrically Efficient

Contrary to its name, the flying lemur, or the colugo does not fly, and is not a part of the lemur family as it is actually not part of the primate family. They instead glide, and have been historically considered as being close to the ancestors of bats. They have however, recently been considered by […]

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 […]

It’s a Bird; It’s a Plane; It’s a…Cucumber? An Examination of the Stabilizing Characteristics of Alsomitra Macrocarpa

Many are familiar with the Northrop Grumman B-2 Spirit’s iconic ‘flying wing’ shape. This was the first aircraft to successfully employ the flying wing design. Northrop Grumman chose the flying wing design primarily for its stealth. The flying wing is also very aerodynamically efficient, as the surface of the entire craft is used to produce […]

Gliding- Parlor Trick, or Vanishing Act?

Being incapable of natural flight, humans have always had their imaginations teased by the animals that take to the skies. Of all the flight methods, gliding is one that upon first-sight seems to defy logic; after all, how can something that has obvious weight just stay in flight without thrust and no immediate source of […]

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 […]

Mammals: Falling With Style

Sure, we’ve all seen Toy Story and Buzz Lightyear’s continued attempts at flight. We all know that the wings on his back will never allow him to achieve flight in the functional sense. He has no ability to flap or twist his wings to produce lift or thrust, nor does he have engines like an […]

On the Day that Pigs Can Fly

While the day has yet to come where pigs are able to fly, many unique animals have evolved over time to allow for flying and gliding capabilites.  Some of these strange creatures include the flying fish, flying squirrel, and gliding lizard.  These animals are not quite capable of flight on their own, but have adapted […]