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Additional resources for Extreme Engineering (Scientific American Special Online Issue No. 19)

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The spacecraft would then require only modest electrodynamic forces to visit each of the four largest moons of Jupiter, from the outermost (Callisto) to the innermost (Io). With Callisto’s orbital period of about half a month, the entire sequence could take less than a year. To return, controllers would reverse the process. They would first switch on the EDT at apoapsis, which lies outside the stationary orbit, to produce thrust and power. The repeated thrust applications at apoapsis would raise periapsis from inside to outside the stationary orbit.

The force differential would tilt the craft toward the side with the reduced lift. Thus, the concept of wing warping was born. Although aircraft designers and engineers continued to employ wing-warping techniques for years afterward (especially on early monoplanes such as the Bleriot XI), ever faster flight speeds eventually led them to beef up wing structures to resist the resulting stresses. Stiff struts and ribs meant that wings were too rigid to flex much torsionally, so builders installed ailerons— flaps located on the outer, trailing-edge portions of wings.

Wasserman in Journal of Aircraft, Vol. 29, No. 3, pages 444–457; May-June 1992. An Active Flexible Wing Multi-Disciplinary Design Optimization Method. G. D. Miller. AIAA Paper No. 94-4412-CP, 1994. Summary of an Active Flexible Wing Program. B. Perry III, S. R. Cole and G. D. Miller in Journal of Aircraft, Vol. 32, No. 1, pages 10–31; JanuaryFebruary 1995. S. net JANUARY 2005 Page Intentionally Blank SCIENTIFIC AMERICAN Digital Building a Brainier Mouse originally published in April 2000 by Joe Z.

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