In order to find an airfoil for a predetermined pressure distribution, the problem must be posed so that the pressure distribution creates no drag. Another fundamental difficulty is that it is impossible to specify a pressure distribution without first knowing the place where these pressures are to be applied, i.e., the wing-section shape. This difficulty may be avoided by directing the pressure distribution along the contour of the wing section. Then it becomes possible to define the change in wing-section shape which effects a certain modification of the wing-section shape. The limitations underlying the required pressure distribution are discussed and it is found that the sole essential limitation is zero drag. The method is illustrated with an example.
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