The Physics of Bird Flight: An ExperimentThe Physics Teacher (2008)
This article describes an experiment that measures the forces acting on a flying bird during takeoff. The experiment uses a minimum of equipment and only an elementary knowledge of kinematics and Newton's second law. The experiment involves first digitally videotaping a bird during takeoff, analyzing the video to determine the bird's position as a function of time and its flapping rate, calculating the velocity of the bird's wings, and finally, inserting those results into Newton's second law of physics. The experiment has been designed for a high school physics class. This article is a follow-up on our recently published theoretical article on the origin of bird flight.
Publication DateJanuary 3, 2008
Citation InformationMichael D. Mihail, Thomas F. George and Bernard J. Feldman. "The Physics of Bird Flight: An Experiment" The Physics Teacher Vol. 46 Iss. 3 (2008) p. 155 - 157
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/bernard-feldman/14/