Monday, September 07, 2009

Francis Rogallo, and his wife Gertrude, inventors of the V-shaped flexible "parawing."

Test flight of the parawing.

The Redstone booster carrying the spacecraft is mounted for testing in Langley's Unitary Plan Wind Tunnel.

Lunar Orbit and Letdown Approach Simulator.

Langley engineers check out the interior of the inflatable 24-foot space station in January 1962.

The "Whole Earth" as photographed by Lunar Orbiter V.

photos courtesy of NASA.

For the things we have to learn before we can do them, we learn only by doing them. Aristotle

Friday, September 04, 2009

Gossamer Albatross

Preparing for the first flight, July 16, 1978

Assessing damage, March 12, 1979

Shafter, California. March 13, 1979

Over the English Channel, June 12, 1979.

photos coutesy of Donald Monroe

From Wikipedia: The Gossamer Albatross was a human-powered aircraft built by American aeronautical engineer Dr. Paul B. MacCready's AeroVironment. On June 12, 1979 it completed a successful crossing of the English Channel to win the second Kremer prize.

Very interesting Paul MacCready interview here.

Gossamer Odyssey: The Triumph of Human-Powered Flight by Morton Grosser gives a detailed account of the project.