Here’s What You Need To Remember: A flying wing reduces drag, making it a useful design for long-range bombing and transport.
As the United States approached World War II, it enjoyed the luxury of many innovative aircraft companies, and a ton of money to spend. Part of this bounty went to pursuit aircraft, part to tactical attack planes, and part to long-range bombers. This last generated one of the most interesting failures ever to emerge from the U.S. aviation industry; the Northrop YB-49 “flying wing” bomber.
The Flying Wing
Early aviation engineers appreciated the potential for a “flying wing” design. A flying wing, which minimizes fuselage and usually eliminates the tail, reduces many of the aerodynamic compromises associated with a normal fuselage, reducing overall drag. However, many of these features enhance stability, meaning that a flying wing often lacks the stability of a traditional airframe. This makes the aircraft more