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HAWK21M
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Alpha Speed - Whats The History On The Name

Wed Aug 16, 2006 9:11 pm

Minimum speed Or Alpha.Where did this Name come from.Anything to do with Alpha,Beta,Gamma etc.
regds
MEL
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Buzz
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RE: Alpha Speed - Whats The History On The Name

Wed Aug 16, 2006 9:30 pm

Hi Hawk, Buzz here. I probably don't have enough gray (or white) hair to be the authority on this. Maximum Alpha is the angle of attack the airplane stalls (in un-accelerated flight) and speed is loosely related to angle of attack.
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SlamClick
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RE: Alpha Speed - Whats The History On The Name

Wed Aug 16, 2006 10:48 pm

And I probably don't have enough gray matter but I'll add this: I think the Greek letter 'alpha' is used more or less uniformly by engineers to represent an angle, as 'delta' is used to represent amount of change, amount of difference and so forth. In this case 'alpha' of attack.

I'd welcome correction from my academic superiors.
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Starlionblue
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RE: Alpha Speed - Whats The History On The Name

Thu Aug 17, 2006 11:39 am

Quoting SlamClick (Reply 2):
And I probably don't have enough gray matter but I'll add this: I think the Greek letter 'alpha' is used more or less uniformly by engineers to represent an angle, as 'delta' is used to represent amount of change, amount of difference and so forth. In this case 'alpha' of attac

Indeed. Taking it further, delta is rate of change (first differential, e.g. acceleration), gamma is rate of change of the change (second differential) and theta is rate of change of the change of the change (third differential). Delta, gamma and theta are used a lot by derivatives traders in risk calculate.
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