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Parachute PNG Transparent Images

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License Info: Creative Commons 4.0 BY-NC


Submitted by on May 10, 2021

A parachute is a device used to slow down the movement of an object in the atmosphere by creating drag (or, in the case of airborne parachutes, aerodynamic lift). Parachutes are usually made of light weight, durable fabric, originally silk, now most often nylon. They are usually domed, but differ in rectangles, inverted domes, etc. Various cargoes are associated with parachutes, including people, food, equipment, space capsules, and bombs.

The drogue chute is used to support the horizontal deceleration of vehicles, including fixed-wing aircraft and drag racers, provides stability to assist certain types of light aircraft in distress free fall in tandem; and as a pilot initiating the deployment of a larger parachute.

The earliest evidence for a true parachute dates back to the Renaissance period. The oldest parachute design appears in an anonymous manuscript from the 1470s of the Italian Renaissance (British Library, Add MS 34113, fol. 200v), which depicts a free-hanging man clutching a crossbar frame attached to a conical canopy. As a safety measure, four straps ran from the ends of the rods to the waist belt. The design is a significant improvement over other folio (189v), which depicts a person trying to break the force of his fall using two long canvas straps attached to two rungs that he grips with his hands. Although the parachute surface appears too small to provide effective air resistance, and the wooden support frame is redundant and potentially dangerous, the basic concept of a working parachute is clear.

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Shortly thereafter, polymath Leonardo da Vinci sketched a more complex parachute in his Codex Atlanticus (fol. 381v), dated c. 1485. Here the scale of the parachute is in a more favorable ratio with the weight of the jumper. Leonardo’s canopy was opened with a square wooden frame, which changed the shape of the parachute from conical to pyramidal. It is not known if the Italian inventor influenced the earlier design, but he may have learned about the idea through intense verbal communication between the artist-engineers of the time. The suitability of Leonardo’s pyramid was successfully tested in 2000 by Briton Adrian Nicholas and again in 2008 by Swiss parachutist Olivier Vietti-Teppa. According to technology historian Lynn White, these conical and pyramidal structures, far more sophisticated than the early artistic parachute jumps with rigid parasols, mark the origin of the “parachute as we know it.”

The Venetian polymath and inventor Fausto Veranzio (1551–1617) studied da Vinci’s parachute sketch and retained the square frame, but replaced the canopy with a protruding piece of cloth, like a canvas, which he realized was more effective in slowing the fall.

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