Downwash of airplane wings

Max M. Munk, Gunther Cairo
January, 1923

The data for the calculation of the air forces acting on the elevators, obtained from previous model experiments are not immediately applicable in practice, as the angle at which the control surfaces meet the air stream is, in general, still unknown. The air stream, when it reaches the elevator has already been deflected by the wings and although the velocity imparted to the air current by the wings is of negligible amount compared with the speed of flight, the air behind the wings has been deflected downwards, so that the elevators work in an airstream which is inclined in a downward direction. The angle at which the air stream meets the elevator surface is, therefore, different from, and, with the usual arrangement of elevators, less than the angle made by the elevator surfaces with the line of flight.

An Adobe Acrobat (PDF) file of the entire report: