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How Do Bees Fly?

  1. Dec 30, 2014 #1
    we all have heard about this conundrum,about the bees can't fly because of the whole small surface area of the wings and greater weight than the lift achieved thing.However,there were some articles that I read that this question had been solved, that bees don't flap their wings up and down, they rather move them back and forth, so the general lift formula,L=CL½ρv^2A can't be applied.So, even by moving their wings in such an action, how do they really create so much lift to compensate for their relatively high mass?(try explaining both with text and numerically whenever possible)
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 30, 2014 #2

    Bystander

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  4. Dec 30, 2014 #3
    Here is a link to some articles (downloadable!) from a friend of mine who studies this stuff at Stanford. He has his own lab there and he trains birds to fly in wind tunnels, but he also studies insect flight and miniature flapping-wing robot flies.

    http://lentinklab.stanford.edu/publications
     
  5. Dec 30, 2014 #4
    Thanks bystander and bigfooted!
     
  6. Dec 30, 2014 #5

    CWatters

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    http://www.snopes.com/science/bumblebees.asp

    Selected quotes..

     
  7. Dec 30, 2014 #6

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    My language skills aren't particularly impressive, however, when going through the "original" article detailing the aerodynamic "analysis" in the original French, I got the impression the "PI" was being deliberately whimsical. Peer reviewed journals aren't written, edited, published, or to be read for entertainment**, leaving an impression at the time that the conclusion (among others in the paper) that bumblebees can't fly was a serious application of aerodynamics, rather than a bon mot inserted on a whim.

    ** Excepting the notably humorous works of Lysenko, Pons & Fleischman, Hoagland and the Cydonauts, plus assorted lesser lights.
     
  8. Dec 30, 2014 #7
    thanx,guys!
     
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