National Geographic : 1960 Jul
Tilting Wing Achieves Vertical Flight Though its prime goal is the conquest of space, NASA also channels talent and money into aircraft re search. The agency experi ments with many odd-look ing designs called VTOL (Vertical Take-off and Land ing) and STOL (Short Take off and Landing) aircraft. This "convertiplane" tilts the wing to give increased lift. With wing and engines pointing straight up, as shown, it can land and take off vertically. When the angle of tilt is lessened, the plane requires only a short runway. Once safely aloft, the experimental craft turns the wing to a horizontal posi tion for normal flight. A technician installs the model in a wind tunnel at Langley. Electricity powers the propellers. In full scale the plane would use turbo prop engines. Some day you may ride a 2,000-mile-an-hour jetliner shaped like this swept-wing model at Langley. KODACHROMESBY NATIONALGEOGRAPHICPHOTOGRAPHERSBATES LITTLEHALES(ABOVE) AND DEAN CONGER( N.G.S.