South Bay Soaring Society members appreciate Dr. Mark Drela’s contributions to our hobby, but Kyle decided it was finally time to shine additional light on what this remarkable MIT professor has accomplished in the field of aviation.
Sir George Cayley, often called the Father of Aeronautics, designed a helicopter powered by a bow-string mechanism with feather blades (similar to the reproduction shown here). Later, he experimented by flying a model with multiple adjustable surfaces, allowing him to understand how every change affected the model’s flight. This model is a ½ scale replica of his original 1804 model. Cayley used the data from these experiments to publish his On Aerial Navigation in 1809.