Before I talk a lot about planes you should know how they work. A plane relies onits wings for flight. The top of a conventional wing is a teardrop shape which is themost aerodynamic shape according to scientists. The bottom is flat which is lessaerodynamic than the top. Since the air passes the bottom less quickly than it is ableto pass the top that creates more pressure on the bottom generating lift to push theairplane up. For the air to do this it has to go fast enough for enough air to pass thewings at a high speed. wing
The first successful powered airplane airplane was created by Wilburand Orville Wright in 1903 with a gasoline powered engine. Before this it isthought Leonardo Da Vinci was the first to come up with the idea of flight inthe late 1400s. Before the wright brothers there were balloons and gliders.The Wright brothers plane was named The Wright Flyer. It started the ideathat planes could be used for longer range transportation.The Wright Flyer
After the Wright brothers aircraft development was literallypropelled forward. In less than two decades airplanes werecapable of combat, in world war one it was the first war airplaneshad been used in. Like the Wright Flyer most were biplanes.Aircraft became vital for reconnaissance, bombing, and attackingother planes which is known as dogfighting. This was thebeginning of aircraft being used by countries. Soon they would beused for commercial and were going to become the most commonmeans of long range travel.
The first time commercial flights became popular was in the 1920’s.Before that there had been planes carrying cargo and occasionallypassengers but when commercial planes became more practical was in the20’s. Now when we think of commercial planes we thing of huge boing jets,however early commercial planes were usually single engine propeller planesthat could carry less than ten people. An example would be the FrenchBleriot-SPAD below.
Gliders were actually the fist kind of aircraft. They are also the mostsimple which explains why they were built first. Although the first gliderswere more like hang gliders than the planes that are gliders today andused to have to be launched off cliffs or steep hills.
All sea planes must take off and land in a large body of water. Theyare not as aerodynamic as other planes because of the floats they use tostay afloat in the water. Almost all seaplanes use propellers to fly.
Once planes became practical and with stronger designs people coulduse them to fly into places that used to be only accessible by foot orboats. People could fly into dense jungles or arctic landscapes. Theseflights were made by what are called aerial pioneers who establishedroutes of flight.
Once World War Two broke out planes played a large part for both sides.The planes now were more advanced but still limited to propellers witchwere the only way to propel planes. Now they were used to bomb, dropparatroopers, and aerial reconnaissance. Planes were more developed andthere were larger aircraft used.
The least known kind of planes were rocket planes. While The firstrocket plane was built in 1928. What we today would consider a rocketplane came much later. The thing that made them stand out was they didnot need any air for their engines to work like jet and propeller planes do.
After World War Two a new faster, more powerful kind of plane was built. They werejet planes. At the time they were not really used for commercial purposes. The firstpractical jet powered plane was The German HE 178. Jet planes would eventuallybecome standard for long distance passenger flight and for many militaries.
By the late twentieth century the use of airplanes was a popular way oftransportation and with jet planes becoming larger and faster the industry wasgrowing fast. Now the practical way to get to far away places is by planes.
Now militaries use primarily jet planes and are made to befaster, stronger, and advanced with more electronic autopilots andnavigation. Today militaries have jets that can go at supersonic speeds.Some can even evade radar and carry smaller planes.
Most major international airlines use giant quad jet engine planes that can carryusually over a hundred people. Small airports still use small propeller planes but they aremuch different than the old planes that were used so many years ago. Now jet planeshave electronic flight computers, navigation, autopilot, and new parts for slowing andcontrolling the aircraft.
Planes have come from the Wright brothers first powered plane in 1903 to the modern jetairliner. They have changed a lot in the past one hundred and ten year that they have beenaround and engineers are making new models right now. They are the new way of longdistance transportation and have become one of the most important/useful inventions builtyet.