The Age Of Aerospace- Learning from the Past

This essay The Age Of Aerospace- Learning from the Past has a total of 3501 words and 22 pages.

The Age Of Aerospace- Learning from the Past


Human beings have always been fascinated by flight. Cave people carved, sculpted, and painted winged creatures soaring through the sky. Greek mythology tells of the winged horse Pegasus, ancient Persian myths tell of winged bulls that guarded the royal halls, and a 4000 year old Chinese story, from the Annals of The Bamboo Books, describes how the Emperor Shun escaped from captivity by "donning the work-clothes of a bird." People struggled for centuries to make human flight a reality, and they succeeded. Man worked for decades to bring about the first space flight, and as the 20th century draws to an end, we look to Mars and beyond in hopes of success.

Throughout this document you will find that the following three fundamental concepts, when applied in conjunction with one another, have lead to the most dramatic aerospace advances.

1. Public awareness and excitement.
2. International and intranational competition.
3. Motivation to set and attain goals.

Areas of interest
This document will delve into the following areas, in an effort to learn from the successes and failures of our predecessors.

1. The history of flight.
2. The history of the U.S. space program.
3. Current aerospace technologies.

This knowledge will then be used to glimpse into man\'s future in the Age of Aerospace.

Figure 1: The Egyptian goddess Isis. (1)


Mans\' early attempts at flight met with utter disaster. People would climb high cliffs or towers, armed with magic spells, homemade wings, or a combination of the two, and plunge to their deaths as they attempted to fly. Figure 2 illustrates an apparatus designed for such a tower flight. The American Heritage History of Flight credits Roger Bacon as the first man to take a scientific approach to flying. Bacon described a machine that would use man powered artificial wings to beat the air like the wings of a bird. Although Bacon envisioned a flying machine, he made no attempt to create one. The first great scientific pioneer of aviation would not come along until 150 years after Roger Bacon.

Figure 2: A flying apparatus designed by the French locksmith Besnier.
AH PG 28.

Leonardo da Vinci
Leonardo da Vinci was an artist, architect, musician, and mathematician. He detailed his ideas and inventions in a series of manuscripts and drawings, Figure 3, which he

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