As a young man training to become a pilot, the engineering behind an aircraft is quite intimidating. However, I’m a technology buff so I decided to use the most powerful tool known to man [the computer] to help resolve my curiosity. I began my research without the intention of going too far in depth on flight and airplane design the first day but enough at least begin in the right direction. I began with the basics and progressed with tidbits of information to further extend upon, all of which I’ve assimilated bellow for those who wish to explore more.
MATERIALS OF A PLANE: Aluminum is the most commonly used metal for planes, and it is the most preferred choice. even more than “all other materials combined” due to its affordability and its strength to weight ratio. Other materials such as wood and composites are used as well but less frequently. The FAA released an information guide on the materials that can be used for a plane.
PLANE COMPONENTS: There are 21 basic parts that make up an airplane and 23 components can be found on an instrument panel. The FAA released a main components list and NASA offers a slightly more in depth lesson on all the mentioned parts.
AERODYNAMICS: Making the plane be able to fly can be one of the most daunting tasks in building a plane. To be able to make something that can fly takes well planned engineering and time. The main forces in flight are lift, drag, thrust, and gravity. If one can design the plane correctly, gravity will be countered by lift and down-force; also, drag will be countered by thrust. As simple as it may sound, going faster and building an efficient plane isn’t as simple as sticking some wings on something and taking off. Yet, with enough study, anyone can learn about flight and the science of flight. As for resources to learn about this wonderful science, NASA comes to the rescue again and provided a basic aerodynamics index for those who are interested in learning.
I hope the information I have provided can satisfy some mutual curiosity that others may hold as well. For learning how to fly the plane - buy a Private Pilot’s Manual, go to a local flight school, get your flight hours, then take a test. May the sky fare well to you. Adieu