Aircraft design is like Darwinism—only the fittest configurations survive. In the early years of aviation, there were biplanes and triplanes, pushers and canards, and even more exotic ideas, but within 50 years the commercial industry had developed what would become the dominant configuration: a pressurized tube with swept wings and podded engines. Combat aircraft have gone through a similar evolution and with the advent of stealth seem to be heading to a future steady state in which ...


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