Worlds of David Darling > Children's
Encyclopedia of Science > Up, Up, and Away > Glossary
UP, UP, AND AWAY: The Science of Flight
a book in the eXperiment! series by David Darling
A panel on the main wing of an aircraft that can be raised or lowered to
help change the plane's direction.
A shape designed to provide lift whenever air moves around it.
The principle that when the speed of a gas or a liquid increases the pressure
it exerts sideways drops.
A nonmetallic substance that is light and can withstand high temperatures.
New ceramics are being developed for use in aircraft that travel at very
The effect by which gases and liquids tend to follow the outlines of curved
objects they flow around.
The part of a jet engine in which the incoming air is squeezed to a high
The force that acts to slow down an object as it moves through a gas or
Panels on the tail plane of an aircraft that can be moved up or down to
make the nose of the plane fall or rise.
An aircraft that flies without an engine. Its pilot tries to find updrafts
of air to gain height and extend the flight.
The second lightest gas. It is safe to use in balloons since it will not
The lightest gas of all but dangerous to use since even a small spark can
cause it to burn fiercely in air.
An engine in which air is sucked in, compressed, and then used to burn a
fuel. The hot exhaust gases rushing out of the back of the engine propel
a jet aircraft forward.
The upward force produced when air rushes over and around an airfoil.
The smallest part of a substance that can exist and still have the properties
of that substance.
The force acting on a unit of a surface.
A curved blade that, when spun around quickly, forces an aircraft forward.
A propeller is a twisted airfoil.
A type of jet engine designed to work at high speeds. It does not need a
compressor since the very fast-moving air compresses itself as it enters
A set of large twisted blades that provides both the lift and the thrust
in a helicopter. The main rotor is attached horizontally and the tail rotor
The upright panel on plane's tail that is moved to the right or left to
help the plane turn.
A special types of ramjet designed to work over 8 times the speed of sound
and at very high altitudes.
The shaping of an object so that a gas or liquid will move easily around
A wing that can be swept back as a plane gathers speed to reduce drag.
An updraft of warm air found over a hot patch of land.
The forward-acting force, supplied by an engine, that allows a plane to
take off and remain airborne.
A series of blades that are turned around by the hot gases rushing out of
a jet engine. As the turbine spins around, so does the compressor to which
it is linked.
A device used to test the performance of models of aircraft and their parts
in air moving at various speeds.