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Airplanes

Parts of a Plane

The body of the plane is called the fuselage. It is generally a long tube shape. The wheels of a plane are called the landing gear. There are two main wheels on either side of the plane fuselage. Then there is one more wheel near the front of the plane. The brakes for the wheels are like the brakes for cars. They are operated by pedals, one for each wheel. Most landing gear can be folded into the fuselage during the flight and opened for landing.

All planes have wings. The wings are shaped with smooth surfaces. The smooth surfaces are slightly curved from the front or leading edge, to the back or trailing edge. Air moving around the wing produces the upward lift for the airplane. The shape of the wings determines how fast and high the plane can fly. A cut through the wing from front to back is called an airfoil.

Fuselage of Airplane Engines on Airplane Flpas on Airplane Wings
Airplane Wings Ailerons on Airplane Wings Airplane Tail

 

The hinged control surfaces are used to steer and control the airplane. The flaps and ailerons are connected to the backside of the wings. The flaps slide back and down to increase the surface of the wing area. They also tilt down to increase the curve of the wing. The slats move out from the front of the wings to make the wing space larger. This helps to increase the lifting force of the wing at slower speeds like takeoff and landing. The ailerons are hinged on the wings and move downward to push the air down and make the wing tilt up. This moves the plane to the side and helps it turn during flight. After landing, the spoilers are used like air brakes to reduce any remaining lift and slow down the airplane.

The tail at the rear of the plane provides stability. The fin is the vertical part of the tail. The rudder at the back of the plane moves left and right to control the left or right movement of the plane. The elevators are found at the rear of the plane. They can be raised or lowered to change the direction of the plane's nose. The plane will go up or down depending on the direction of that the elevators are moved.

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What is Aeronautics? | Dynamics of Flight | Airplanes | Engines | History of Flight | What is UEET?
Vocabulary | Fun and Games | Educational Links | Lesson Plans | Site Index | Home


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Editor: Dr. Robert J. Shaw
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Last Updated: Sep 13 2010

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