PDF | This project will describe the physics of a common Frisbee in flight. The aerodynamic forces acting on the Frisbee are lift and drag, with lift. Issue 1 | Article The Aerodynamics of Frisbee Flight. Kathleen Baumback. University of South Florida. Advisors: Masahiko Saito, Mathematics and Statistics. Use aerodynamic principles to predict the flight direction and distance for a Frisbee.

Author: Kajizil Grogis
Country: Vietnam
Language: English (Spanish)
Genre: Relationship
Published (Last): 10 July 2012
Pages: 29
PDF File Size: 20.46 Mb
ePub File Size: 6.6 Mb
ISBN: 992-1-62894-801-8
Downloads: 18184
Price: Free* [*Free Regsitration Required]
Uploader: Moogular

Pilots enjoy working and helping people in the “third dimension. How far did it travel away from the center line, and in what direction? Likewise, by spinning the disc, one trades roll stability for pitch stiffness.

The Aerodynamics and Stability of Flying Discs

The equations of motion of the system, accounting for the external forces and moments is found to be [2]. This pressure difference provides the lift. How will launch frosbee change the flight in each of these conditions? What would you tell our sponsors about how Science Buddies helped you with your project?

The circulation about the disc and the free-stream flow of air past the disc causes frisbbee force in the direction of the cross product of V with the angular momentum of the disc.

aerodynamics – How do disks generate lift? – Aviation Stack Exchange

To first approximation, a flying disc is simply an axi-symmetric wing with an elliptical cross-section. The force exerted by air is split up into two components: The momentum of the spin also gives it drisbee stability, allowing the Frisbee to receive a aeroxynamics lift from the air as it passes through it. Similar to a plane wing, this difference in pressure above the disc and below the disc results in lift.

What about across or with the wind?

Drag is a backward force on the Frisbee, and it goes against the Frisbee’s movement through the air. When the Frisbee is thrown tilted downward, it does not have much lift and so it quickly falls to the ground.

Figure 2 below shows how lift and drag act on a Aetodynamics. Lift is generated by the Frisbee’s shaped surfaces as it passes through the air. Gravity –The force that makes objects move or tend to move toward each other. As a side note, you have probably noticed that a Frisbee does not travel far if it is thrown without spin.


You may print and distribute up to copies of this document annually, at no charge, for personal and classroom educational use. Once in the air, lift and angular momentum act on the Frisbee giving it a ballet-type performance.

Post as a guest Name. The difference in pressure causes the Frisbee to rise or lift. ArtSkills Trifold with Header.

What effect does the rim of a fisbee have on its flight? Weight is acting straight down towards the earth, and is the same force that acts on all objects influenced by gravity.

Therefore, if one aerodynzmics to simply throw a flying disc, aefodynamics lift would also frksbee a moment on the disc aeeodynamics cause it to flip over backwards. You can imagine that if your arm were the hour hand of a clock, the previous throw would have been directed toward three o’clock and this throw should aim between one o’clock and ftisbee o’clock. This incurs a small separation area at the rear end, but prevents much larger separation at the leading edge at medium angles of attack.

The lift on a body is described by the lift equation. To find out more, including how to control cookies, see here: When a Frisbee is in flight there are three main forces acting on it: Background Two key forces that act on a Frisbee during flight are lift and drag.

The frisbee can be seen as a wing with an airfoil that looks the same from both directions. What problems did you encounter? You will be throwing the Frisbee so that it is directed down this center line.

Professor Robert B. Laughlin, Department of Physics, Stanford University

Another significant factor in the Frisbee’s lift is Newton’s Third Law which states that for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. The details of F and M depend on the aerodynamics of the disc.

Helper for measuring and throwing back the Frisbee Optional: Compared to a typical science class, please tell us how much you learned doing this project. All other rights, including commercial rights, are reserved to the author.


They also inspect the work of aircraft mechanics, and keep detailed records of work done to maintain or repair an aircraft. Spinning the Frisbee when it is thrown, or giving it angular momentum gyroscopic inertiaprovides it with stability. Can you investigate at what launch angle your Frisbee begins to stall? The turbulent drisbee helps to keep the boundary layer of the flow over the top of the disc attatched to the disc, substantially increasing lift.

Aviation Stack Exchange works best aerodynanics JavaScript enabled. Much more Do you agree? Lift is the force that allows the Frisbee to stay airborne, and in flight it rrisbee the force of gravity on the disk’s mass.

Generally, C increases linearly in relation to an increase of an angle of attack, until a certain point where it drops off. The author grants permission to copy, distribute and display this work in unaltered form, with attribution to the author, for noncommercial purposes only.

Typically the moment due to lift and drag pressure on the disc is nearly perpendicular to the angular momentum of the spinning disc, and thus the disc experiences gyroscopic precession. Without the thick rim, throwing a flying disc would be significantly more difficult. Since the center of pressure is close to the leading edge, a disc would quickly topple over due to the different locations of the center of pressure and the center of gravity. Support for Science Buddies provided by:.

How does the launch angle change a flight in each of these conditions? Based on aerodynamic principles, why do you think you saw these relationships? If you have not thrown a Frisbee much before, you may want to try practicing it for a little while.