Science Collection | Any guess what this might be used for?
It is an aerodynamic wind tunnel balance, designed by Leonard Bairstow in 1912. Balances come in many different forms and can measure aerodynamic loads during wind tunnel tests. This model is a pyramidal balance used for measuring forces and torques.
In 1913, Jerome Hunsaker was determined to build a basic atmospheric wind tunnel, modeled after the European ones he visited. That same year, Hunsaker’s assistant, Edward Warner and student Donald Douglas suceeded, MIT's first wind tunnel was installed, and the Cambridge Scientific balance was put to work.
MIT was the first university in the United States to offer a graduate degree in aeronautical engineering in 1914.
📷 : "Aerodynamic Wind Tunnel Balance", Balance, 1914. Gift of MIT Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics