An airfoil is any surface that produces a useful aerodynamic force. Here are some examples of uses of those aerodynamic forces:

  • Lift
  • Negative Lift
  • Stability
  • Thrust
  • Control

When talking about airfoils it is important to know the technical terminology, including:

  • Leading and Trailing Edges
  • Chord Line and Chord
  • Upper, Lower and Mean Cambers
  • Center of Pressure
  • Blade Span

There are also two main types of airfoil with certain advantages and disadvantages to each:

  • Symmetrical Airfoil
  • Asymmetrical Airfoil


Learn more about airfoil types, terms and concepts with this short video on airfoils:


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