NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Back to results
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ860233
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008-Mar
Pages: 3
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0031-921X
The Physics of Bird Flight: An Experiment
Mihail, Michael D.; George, Thomas F.; Feldman, Bernard J.
Physics Teacher, v46 n3 p155-157 Mar 2008
This article describes an experiment that measures the forces acting on a flying bird during takeoff. The experiment uses a minimum of equipment and only an elementary knowledge of kinematics and Newton's second law. The experiment involves first digitally videotaping a bird during takeoff, analyzing the video to determine the bird's position as a function of time and its flapping rate, calculating the velocity of the bird's wings, and finally, inserting those results into Newton's second law of physics. The experiment has been designed for a high school physics class. This article is a follow-up on our recently published theoretical article on the origin of bird flight.
American Association of Physics Teachers. One Physics Ellipse, College Park, MD 20740. Tel: 301-209-3300; Fax: 301-209-0845; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: High Schools
Audience: Teachers
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A