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"Re-living The Wright Way"

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Invention Process

Researched Flight

Tested Theories

Flight Control

Test Pilot Skills

Propulsion System

First Flight

Flight Development

Pushing Envelope

Wilbur Wright Bio

Orville Wright Bio

Lesson Plans






1900 - Aircraft

1901 - Aircraft

1902 - Aircraft

Powered Aircraft

1903 - Wright Flyer

1904 - Aircraft

1905 - Aircraft

Flight Control

Wing Warping

1901 - Wind Tunnel

Wright Brothers' Invention Process

(1904 - Beyond) - Pushing the Envelope

After the successful development of the first airplane, the Wright Brothers continued to be involved in aerospace technology. Orville was one of the original members of the National Advisory Council on Aeronautics (NACA) which is the parent organization of the current NASA.

In the spirit of the Wright Brothers, NASA is attempting to use aeronautics technology to provide affordable access to space. Lead by the Marshall Space Flight Center, this aero-space initiative looks forward to the day when space travel becomes as routine as air travel is today.


Related Research Programs

Civil Tiltrotor Project (CTR) The Civil Tiltrotor Project is developing aircraft that will drastically reduce runway congestion and airport capacity issues. Tiltrotor aircraft can take-off and land vertically, similar to a helicopter, where no runway is required. The future vision of this program is to allow for greater public access to flight by creating a series of small vertiports to siphon off short-haul commuter traffic and free-up runway space for larger aircraft.
Air-breathing Rocket Propulsion NASA is using new propulsion technology to develop rockets that weigh much less at take-off then conventional rockets which are weighed down by large supplies of fuel and oxygen. Air-breathing rocket propulsion inhales oxygen during flight so that oxygen does not have to be stored on board. The air-breathing rocket is going to be completely reusable, and able to take off and land at airport runways because of the drastically reduced weight.
Magnetic Levitation The Mag-Lev uses a magnetic track to lift a vehicle, and then move it forward very quickly. This technology will be used to make rocket take-offs more efficient by giving them a running start.
Helios Prototype On August 13, 2001 the Helios prototype set a world-record by achieving sustained flight at more then 96,000 feet. The Helios is an unmanned solar powered aircraft, with a gigantic wingspan of 247 feet. The Helios prototype has two program goals; to reach an altitude of 100,000 feet with a small payload, and to achieve a sustained flight with a duration of at least 96 hours.
Blended Wing-Body Aircraft NASA is developing a hybrid shaped aircraft resembling a flying wing, but incorporating the same features as conventional airliners. The efficient high-lift wings and wide airfoil-shaped body generate lift, and minimize drag, increasing fuel economy.
High Speed Research Program NASA is developing the passenger jet of the future. A next-generation supersonic jet that could fly 300 passengers more then 1500 mph (twice the speed of sound). This plane could cross the Atlantic or Pacific in less then half the time of today's commercial flights.
X-37 The X-37 is NASA's advanced flight test demonstrator. This reusable launch vehicle will be designed to operate in both orbital and reentry phases of flight. The X-37 will feature dozens of advanced airframes, avionics, and operational techniques.
Advanced Space Transportation System The Advanced Space Transportation Program is striving to achieve the full potential of space for all human endeavors through safe, affordable, and reliable transportation. NASA researchers are developing innovative technologies for low-cost space transportation systems that will be as reliable and safe as today's airlines. Research efforts and technological developments are aimed towards accelerating breakthroughs that will make it possible for ordinary people to live, work, and play in space.

Site Map and Links to Wright Brothers Information


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Editor: Tom Benson
NASA Official: Tom Benson
Last Updated: Thu, Jun 12 05:10:22 PM EDT 2014

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