Unicom

May 2011 Issue

Physics 101

In April’s "Using Ground Effect," I think the author made an inaccurate and misleading statement concerning the aerodynamics of ground effect. The article wrongly asserts Newton’s equal and opposite force has different effects when operating close to the ground as opposed to at altitude. He states, "At altitude, of course, there’s no reaction between this downward forced air and the wing because there’s nothing against which it can react." If this were true, an airplane wing would not be able to fly when at altitude and only achieve lift when close to the ground.

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