Perfecting the Parachute Essay

Submitted By Panekkk
Words: 606
Pages: 3

Propelled by gravity and hurdling towards Earth at maximum velocity, an object or person in free fall can seem dangerously vulnerable. Now-a-days we can perform this feat with ease, thanks to 100s, even 1000s of years of an assortment on scientists, engineers, balloonists, adrenalin junkies, and even kite makers, having designed and tested many variations of parachutes. The first recorded jump from a perfectly fine airplane was accomplished March 1, 1912, where US Army captain, Albert Berry, jumped off an axel of a biplane, landing safely by parachute. Taking a total of 500 feet for Berry’s parachute to completely fill with air, the “uneasy feeling” in his stomach is now what countless of thrill seekers experience daily. Although plans, designs, and drawings of parachutes can be dated back to The Father of Parachute himself, Leonardo De Vinci in the 1400s, they are constantly changing to perfect the desired performance for an exact event. In 1470 Leonardo sketched an outlandishly original, tent-roof style, parachute, making many people think beyond what they know. Never tested in his lifetime, the tent-roof chute was finally commemorated on the Discovery TV show, Mythbusters. Testing the design with proper materials of the time, the physics worked, and the chute was claimed to be able to carry a human safely to the ground. 150 yeasr following Leonardo De Vinci’s death, Venetian Fausto Veranzio, created a famous drawing named, “The Flying Man”. His sketch played off Leonardo’s design, but elongated the chute to a rectangular form to create more drag. This design pre dated the similar parafoil, designed 350 years later, which is still a popular parachute used today. The name “parachute” can be credited to the Frenchman, Louis Lenordmand, who successfully jumped off a high, French, observatory. Successfully jumping with a 14 foot, cloth parachute with a light wood frame, he proudly called it “le parachute- Greek word “para”, meaning “against”, along with French word “chute”, or “to fall”. In the 1900s the parachute took flight into many forms, shapes, and uses. The biggest breakthrough simultaneously designed by many engineers and designers was the idea of putting the actual chute into a bag, backpack, or container. With ropes connected to the chute in the bag, and then to either the airplane or personal ripcord, the jumper or devise release is controlled to a T. First