Weatherwatch: How aircrafts erode when they hit rain at high speeds

Aerospace industry has researched extensively into how raindrops affect planes and spacecrafts travelling at velocity

Rain blown by the wind batters your face. Driving on a motorway, it smashes into your car windscreen with even greater force. At high speeds raindrops can wear away solid materials, which is a serious concern in the aerospace industry.

For propeller aircraft, rain was mainly a vision problem, but in the jet age planes were vulnerable to raindrops eroding paint coatings and damaging plastic, ceramic and even metal components. The problem was even more acute with rockets; to a spacecraft re-entering the atmosphere at high velocity, every droplet is a liquid bullet.

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