Unformatted text preview: II £ly-ing wing" design would maximize range. But in a subsequent analysis, Foa showed that the second derivative was positive, not negative, under these circumstances. Thus, the "flying wing" design miIlimized range; it didn't marimize it. In Foa's words, "The flying wing was the aerodynamically worst possible choice of configuration." This is a very interesting exam-ple of how important it is to look at the second derivative to make SUIe that you do not confuse a maximi-zation point with a minimi7:ation point. While the backers of the B-2 bomber claiIn that it is a good plane despite this error, no one denies that the error is an embarrass-ment. · .-This discussion is based on W. Biddle, "Skeleton Alleged in the Stealth Bomber's Closet." Science (May 12, 1989). 00...
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- Fall '08
- United States Air Force, B-2 Spirit, Stealth aircraft, B-52 Stratofortress, Flying wing