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Barnaby Wainfan

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Barnaby Wainfan is a principal aerodynamics engineer for Northrop Grumman’s Advanced Design organization. A private pilot with single engine and glider ratings, Barnaby has been involved in the design of unconventional airplanes including canards, joined wings, flying wings and some too strange to fall into any known category.

Design Process: End Plates and Winglets

A wing produces a pressure difference between its upper and lower surface. The pressure on top of the wing is lower than the pressure...

Design Process: Wingtips

In our study of wing design, we have progressed from the inner portion and the flaps to the outer part of the span and...

Design Process: Aileron Types

The size and planform of the ailerons are set by the roll-control power needed to meet flying qualities and maneuvering requirements. Once the designer...

Design Process: Ailerons

Last month we looked at roll control schemes for airplanes where high lift or other requirements do not leave enough room on the wing’s...

AirVenture Hail Shields

With thunderstorms and possible hail predicted for Wednesday night, AirVenture exhibitors and visitors found a new use for bubble wrap and moving blankets. Thunderstorms did...

Flaperons, Spoilers and Drooping Ailerons

There are some situations where there isn’t enough room on the wing’s trailing edge to split the functions cleanly between an inboard flap and...
rv-14 aileron

Design Process: Roll Control

The primary function of the wing is to generate lift, but it must also incorporate control surfaces to control the airplane in roll.

Design Process: Slots and Slats

Opening a properly shaped slot between the lower and upper surface of the wing near the leading edge can greatly increase the angle of...

Design Process: Droops and VGs

In general, there are two ways to increase the maximum lift of a wing. The first, as we have been discussing the past couple...

Design Process: Flap Types

Last month we took a look at the trade-offs the designer should consider when defining the flap system for the airplane. The choice comes...

In Case You Missed it

Fixed Pitch vs. Constant Speed

Deciding to use a fixed-pitch propeller or step up to the higher weight, cost, and complexity of a constant-speed prop in order to improve performance.

Exhausting!

We visit Vetterman Exhaust for a behind-the-scenes look at how exhaust systems are made.

Wind Tunnel

Aeroelasticity—structure with a twist.

Build It Better: For Want of a Nail

In aviation, one pin out of place can result in disaster. Details matter.