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One of the most fascinating creatures on Earth, the dragonfly has a very ancient stroke. It's an up-and-down stroke instead of a back-and-forth stroke. An airfoil uses aerodynamic lift to carry its weight. But the dragonfly uses a lot of aerodynamic drag to carry its weight. What’s odd is that with airplanes you always think about minimizing drag, you never think about using drag for lift.
The physics of dragonfly flight inspired me to build a mechanical dragonfly based on scientific research by Z. Jane Wang, professor of theoretical and applied mechanics at Cornell University, and Akira Azuma research papers. This design utilizes drag to create flight by using theoretical models including momentum theory and the blade element theory.
The inspiration for this mechanical insect originated from many of the fantasized gadgets of Leonardo da Vinci and other mechanical creations once thought futuristic in times long before our own.