Saab 35 Draken

    Experiences from the Saab 210 provided useful input for the design of the first truly supersonic plane from Saab. The new Saab 35 Draken (Dragon in English) had dual-delta wings and is considered by many to be the most beautiful design in Swedish aviation history.

    It was the beginning of the 1950s and development was still carried out in the old proven manner with pencil and paper, basic adding machines and slide rules.

    The unusual wing configuration was motivated by the requirement for good low speed performance. It was actually a combination of two wing shapes. The inner wing with its strong taper transitioned to a thin outer wing with less taper and greater span. It was the inner wing that provided good performance at high speed, while the outer wing enabled good performance at low speed.

     

    The new double-delta design was also tested on an aircraft model equipped with a pulse jet engine. From a control panel, acceleration and elevators could be regulated with lines and the model was flown in a half circle. All motion was recorded by a camera at various speeds.