Sir Isaac Newton is credited with the three basic laws of motion. His three laws are the governing principles of flight.
Newton’s laws are as follows:
- A body at rest tends to remain at rest, and a body in motion tends to remain at the same speed and in the same direction. In nature nothing starts or stops moving until an outside force causes it to.
- When a body is acted upon by a constant force, its resulting acceleration is inversely proportional to the mass of the body and is directly proportional to the applied force. Or inertia.
- Whenever one body exerts a force on another, the second body always exerts on the first, a force that is equal in magnitude but opposite in direction. The same rule creates the recoil from a rifle.
Learn more about airplane aerodynamics with the Illustrated Guide to Aerodynamics. This unique introductory guide, which sold more than 20,000 copies in its first edition, proves that the principles of flight can be easy to understand, even fascinating, to pilots and technicians who want to know how and why an aircraft behaves as it does.