Wind Tunnel

In 1907 the first factory wind-tunnel was built and installed in a shed in Farnborough by the National Physical Laboratory. It consisted of a wooden framework covered with canvas, which had wallpaper pasted over it to make it airtight! Over the years the design was refined and in 1935 a new tunnel was opened, housed in a steel and reinforced concrete building, 230ft long, 140ft wide and 5ft high. The first aircraft to be tested was the Gloster Gauntlet. This was followed by high-speed, supersonic, transonic and hypersonic tunnels, several of which are now listed buildings under the guardianship of Farnborough Air Sciences Trust (FAST).

Nowadays, QinetiQ operates a five-metre wind tunnel (one of only three in the world) at Farnborough, which over the past 10 years has been used by Boeing for numerous programmes, including the 787 family, 777 family, the 747-8 and the 737 MAX. 

QinetiQ People Who Know How
Wind Tunnel