Look to the Birds

Oxford University zoologists Graham Taylor and Adrian Thomas have outfitted an eagle with four miniature high-speed spy cameras and other instruments in a 15 g pack to learn more about its aviational secrets. An inertial measurement unit recorded details of the bird's aerobatics and transmitted the data to a receiver on the ground. The collected data indicated that when the bird banks, it turns its head and its body follows. Also of interest was the way the bird changed shape during sudden braking and other free-flight maneuvers. The research could have important implications for aircraft design. http:// tinyurl.com/m27sy