Phenomena

Wind Tunneling Testing for BASE Jumpers

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While we usually think of wind tunnel testing airplane models, the truth is that wind tunnels today test a much wider array of subjects. From oil rigs and skyscrapers to athletes and police sirens, if you can imagine it, it’s probably been stuck in a wind tunnel. This video shows some wind tunnel testing of a tracking suit used for BASE jumping. The primary focus seems to be on lift and drag at angle of attack–which can be used to determine glide ratios for the pilot–but there is also some study of localized turbulence generation, as evidenced by the use of smoke generators and the streamers attached to the suit’s arms and legs. (submitted by Jason C)

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