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NASA Meatball NASA Dryden F-16XL Ship #2 banner
F-16XL Ship #2 SLFC - in flight F-16XL Ship #2 SLFC - in flight

Photo Number: EC95-43297-6
Photo Date: October 13, 1995

Formats: 362x480 JPEG Image (42 KBytes)
773x1024 JPEG Image (284 KBytes)
1620x2147 JPEG Image (501 KBytes)

Description: The laminar flow control panel in the left wing (dark area, forward center) of NASA's F-16XL is highly visible in this photo taken Oct. 13, 1995, during the first functional check flight of the aircraft following the experimental panel's installation. The laminar flow research project, flown at NASA's Dryden Flight Research Center, Edwards, California, investigated the use of a suction system built into the experimental panel and wing to remove a small part of the boundary layer of air above the aircraft wing to expand the extent of laminar (smooth) flow.

This can reduce aerodynamic drag and help reduce aircraft operating costs by improving fuel consumption. Data from the NASA research project may lead to the use of a similiar suction system to achieve laminar flow on future supersonic transports and fighter aircraft.

Keywords: F-16XL Ship #2; supersonic laminar flow control; left wing; aerodynamic drag; boundary layer

Last Modified: February 6, 2002
Responsible NASA Official: Marty Curry
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