IET Lecture – Aerodynamics from Montgolfier to Concorde and Beyond…

This was a lecture from Dr Paul Bruce, Imperial College London, on the history, present and future of aerodynamics.  It covered the origins of flight through the first balloons built by the Montgolfier brothers to the scramjets and rockets used to power some of the fastest vehicles in the world. It gave an insight into the future of engineering and also a taste of the courses of engineering and physics at university.

About 20 students attended from Reigate Grammar School, all of whom enjoyed the talk and certainly learnt something new. It was a well thought out and scintillating lecture that was engaging throughout to both the students from our school and many of the members of the wider community who were also in attendance.  There were even some representatives from the school’s RAF contingent and I am sure the lecture appealed greatly with the majority of the talk dedicated to the design and tricks used by aeronautical engineers to create faster and more efficient planes in the 21st century.  The discussion of the future of flight and space exploration raised many innovative ideas from everyone; Richard Branson to the military.

The technical detail and highly mathematical approach to the ideas were mixed in with the more historical basis of the life of the Concorde to explain some complex concepts in easily understandable terms that held interest throughout the talk.


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