Law of physics governs airplane evolution

July 22, 2014 3:31 PM

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DURHAM, N.C. -- Researchers believe they now know why the supersonic trans-Atlantic Concorde aircraft went the way of the dodo -- it hit an evolutionary cul-de-sac.

In a new study, Adrian Bejan, professor of mechanical engineering and materials science at Duke University, shows that a law of physics he penned more than two decades ago helps explain the evolution of passenger airplanes from the small, propeller-driven DC-3s of yore to today's behemoth Boeing 787...

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