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geometry

The Moment of Truth

By Jackie Valentine

Just a few weeks ago, the Fleet hosted our second Paper Airplane Day in the theater lobby. Participants mixed aerodynamics with origami techniques to construct a properly balanced plane. The planes had to be the right size and shape to generate enough lift to fly. No cuts or tape were allowed. Drawing on the templates of the current paper airplane distance world record holder, we explored sophisticated “nose locking” folds that helped keep the nose end components of the plane together during flight.

What Is Topology?

Taping Shape

By Kanaga Rajan

You may think our exhibition, Taping Shape, is all fun, no science. Well, it certainly IS fun, but it’s an excellent study of topology. Topology is a field in math that studies the geometric and spatial properties of shapes that are maintained after deformations such as stretching or twisting.