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'Charvolants travelling in various directions with the same Wind', 1827.

Roberts, P

'Charvolants travelling in various directions with the same Wind', 1827.
4 0 c m
actual image size: 24cm x 32cm


Engraving by P Roberts after S Colman of a charvolant or kite carriage, a vehicle designed to be drawn by a kite. According to its designer George Pocock, consistent speeds of 20 mph were posible. He built a four-wheeled charvolant, which he used regularly on the Bristol-Marlborough road, once apparently overtaking a mail coach. A right-angled wind was overcome thus: 'By means of the kite's side-lines (properly termed braces) an obliquity may be given to the kite's surface, and thus the angle of incidence is formed, on which the wind acting produces the traverse.' On dealing with a headwind, however, the book's author was unclear. Illustration from Pocock's 'Treatise on the aeropleustic Art, or Navigation in the Air', (London, 1827).

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© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library

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