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The past decade has produced a new technology in sandwich constructions. The wartime needs for more effective use of materials and for higher strength-weight ratios directed first practical developments to military airframes. The plywood-balsa sandwich monocoque fuselage of the Mosquito Bomber is the classic example of this kind of pioneer application. Later in the war, drastic increases in air speeds and the concomitant requirement for aerodynamically smoother surfaces added interest. Finally, the sharp growth after 1945 in size of both commercial and military planes—which tended at first to outpace power developments—spurred the efforts to reduce airframe weight and intensified the work on sandwich materials. Thus, the aircraft industry has set the pattern for this new technology.
Rapp, G. M.
Assistant Executive Director, John B. Pierce Foundation, Raritan, N. J