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Alexander Graham Bell’s Kite Designs are Geometrical Wonders

Kites 9

Mashable puts the spotlight on Alexander Graham Bell’s little known yet magnificent kite designs.

In 1899, Alexander Graham Bell, famous for inventing the telephone, began experimenting with kites in search of insights into the possibility of powered flight.

Inspired by the box kite designs of Australian Laurence Hargrave, Bell began multiplying the lift-providing cells, creating compound structures of multiple kites.

The basic problem of creating flying objects is that as a body’s surface area is squared, its weight is cubed, limiting the maximum size and lifting capability.

Over the course of years experimenting at his Nova Scotia laboratory, Bell discovered that a tetrahedron — a three-dimensional prism of four triangular sides — could be useful.

Read more.


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1 Comment

  1. I urge all makers and hackers to visit the Alexander Graham Bell museum, in Baddeck, Nova Scotia.

    First, Baddeck and Nova Scotia is just beautiful and the Canadian dollar is low. 😉

    Second, they have Bell artifacts there direct from the Bell estate just down the road. On the White Glove tour, we got to actually touch some of these models and see a little bit into Bell’s mind.

    Bell is under-rated as a scientist and engineer, and that’s saying something. He was far more prolific than one might think. He helped pioneer data transmission via light. Yes! That long ago!

    Go check it out. Seriously.

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