Lift is a force generated by turning a
flow. Many different objects can generate a lift force and there many
which influence the generation of lift.
The left window shows a flow of air going by an object. You can select
the shape of the object by using the menu button below the window.
Just click on the menu button and select from the drop-menu.
You can rotate the object by using the slider below the view
window or by backspacing over the input box, typing in your new value and
hitting the Enter key on the keyboard.
On the right is a meter which measures the lift and displays it in scientific
notation. You can display either the lift value (in
English or Metric units) or the
by using the choice
buttons surrounding the output box.
The physical details of each of these examples are discussed on
separate slides for the airplane wing,
rotating cylinder, and spinning ball.
In each case, the fluid passing the object is
turned. And the reaction of the object is
the generation of a force perpendicular to the initial flow
direction. This force is called lift.
In the program at the top of this page, the
is constant (100 mph) and the
is also constant and equal to the sea level, standard day
For all the shapes except the ball, the area of the
wing is the same. For the ball, the area is a
smaller circular cross section.
Using the program, which shape gives the greatest lift? How does lift
change with increasing
You can download your own copy of the program to run off-line by clicking on this button:
You can further investigate the lift of objects by using the
FoilSim II Java Applet.
your own copy of FoilSim to play with
Here is a still slide of lifting objects: