Otto Lilienthal

Also found in: Dictionary, Wikipedia.
Otto Lilienthal
Karl Wilhelm Otto Lilienthal
BirthplaceAnklam, Province of Pomerania
NationalityPrussian, German
Known for Successful gliding experiments

Lilienthal, Otto

(ô`tō lē`lyəntäl), 1848–96, German aeronautical engineer, a pioneer in his experiments with glidersglider,
type of aircraft resembling an airplane but having at most a small auxiliary propulsion plant and usually no means of propulsion at all. The typical modern glider has very slender wings and a streamlined body.
..... Click the link for more information.
. He made major developments in the glider based on his observations of birds and wrote a number of books on aviation. His brother, Gustav Lilienthal, 1849–1933, was associated with Otto in his flying experiments and continued them after his brother's death.

Lilienthal, Otto


Born May 23, 1848, in Anklam; died Aug. 9, 1896, in Berlin. German engineer; pioneer in aviation.

Lilienthal completed many flights on gliders that he designed himself. He came to the conclusion that, all other conditions being equal, a wing with a concave profile provides more lift than a flat wing. He proved by experiments that the magnitude of lifting force of wings varies with the change in their angle of attack. For this reason, the correlation diagram between the frontal resistance coefficient and the lift coefficient of an aircraft has been named after Lilienthal—that is, the Lilienthal polar. He offered an explanation of the factors involved in the gliding of birds (”The Flight of Birds as a Basis for Aviation,” 1889). He was killed near the town of Steglitz (near Berlin) during a flight from Mount Rinower. N. E. Zhukovskii valued Lilienthal’s experiments highly.


Zhukovskii, N. E. “Letatel’nyi apparat Otto Lilientalia.” In Zhukovskii, N. E. Poln. sobr. soch., vol. 9. Moscow-Leningrad, 1937.
Zhukovskii, N. E. “O gibeli vozdukhoplavatelia Otto Lilientalia (Rech’).” Ibid.
References in periodicals archive ?
Da Vinci's design was repeated in the late 1800s by young German pioneer Otto Lilienthal, known as the original hang glider.
The German engineer Otto Lilienthal, with his bird-like hang glider, was the first aviator to be photographed.
Together, they devoted themselves to the goal of human flight--more directly so after one of their heroes, glider experimenter Otto Lilienthal, died in a flying accident.
Showcased in this exhibition is an original engine from the powerful Airbus, a life-size model of one of several gliders designed by German engineer Otto Lilienthal, a WWII Hawker Hurricane, Britain's first plane to exceed 300mph, and a giant Pterosaur, one of the largest vertebrates ever to have flown.
The highly paid Samuel Pierpont Langley, director of the Smithsonian Institute, and Otto Lilienthal of Germany, both respected experts on flight, were the sources of information for the Wrights.
They based their design on lift tables by Otto Lilienthal, the German scientist who had worked out a ratio of wing area to forward motion.
Contract notice: otto lilienthal kaserne roth, new construction of six accommodation buildings for course participants of the oslw.
Their interest in aviation was sparked in the mid-1890s by the glider flights of Germany's Otto Lilienthal and became a serious endeavor in 1899.
Meanwhile, a German engineer, Otto Lilienthal, who was achieving international fame with spectacular flights in hang gliders of his own design, inspired William Randolph Hearst.
: Realization of thermal insulation composite work in the context of the extension of the elementary school "otto lilienthal".
Wells, and original letters written by aviation pioneers like Otto Lilienthal, Graf Zeppelin, and the Wright Brothers.