Leonardo da Vinci’s discovery of the dynamic soaring by birds in wind shear
Richardson, Philip L.
MetadataShow full item record
Although Leonardo da Vinci (1452-1519) is well-known to have studied bird flight, few people realize that he was the first to document flight maneuvers now called dynamic soaring. Birds use these maneuvers to extract energy from the gradient of wind velocity (wind shear) for sustained flight. In his Manuscript E (circa 1513-1515) Leonardo described land birds performing flight maneuvers that match those of albatrosses and other seabirds when they are engaged in dynamic soaring over the ocean. His description predates by almost 400 years the first generally-accepted explanation of the physics of this soaring technique by Lord Rayleigh in 1883. Leonardo’s early description of dynamic soaring is one of his major aerodynamic discoveries.
Author Posting. © The Author(s), 2018. This is the author's version of the work. It is posted here under a nonexclusive, irrevocable, paid-up, worldwide license granted to WHOI. It is made available for personal use, not for redistribution. The definitive version was published in Notes and Records: the Royal Society Journal of the History of Science (2018), doi:10.1098/rsnr.2018.0024.
Suggested CitationPreprint: Richardson, Philip L., "Leonardo da Vinci’s discovery of the dynamic soaring by birds in wind shear", 2018-07-03, https://doi.org/10.1098/rsnr.2018.0024, https://hdl.handle.net/1912/10641
Showing items related by title, author, creator and subject.
Stern, Melvin E. (Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, 1986-12)Our thanks go to Martin Landahl for his stimulating expository lectures on recent development in "lab scale" turbulent flow. This subject was covered by him and other staff members from the experimental, analytic, and ...
On nonhydrostatic coastal model simulations of shear instabilities in a stratified shear flow at high Reynolds number Zhou, Zheyu; Yu, Xiao; Hsu, Tian-Jian; Shi, Fengyan; Geyer, W. Rockwell; Kirby, James T. (John Wiley & Sons, 2017-04-11)The nonhydrostatic surface and terrain-following coastal model NHWAVE is utilized to simulate a continually forced stratified shear flow in a straight channel, which is a generic problem to test the existing nonhydrostatic ...
Ralston, David K.; Stacey, Mark T. (Sears Foundation for Marine Research, 2006-01)In intertidal regions with subtidal channels, effects of bathymetry on overlying flow vary greatly with tidal stage. Around low water when mudflats and marsh are exposed, flow is constrained to channels, but when water ...