Angle of Attack

Angle of Attack and Lift

Angle of attack must not be confused with an airplane's attitude in relation to the earth's surface, or with "angle of incidence" (the angle at which the wing is attached relative to the longitudinal axis of the airplane). Angle of attack is most frequently defined as the angle between the chord line of the wing, and the relative wind. Generally, it is sufficient to say that angle of attack is simply the angular difference between where the wing is headed and where it is actually going.

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