Arrows and Darts

Credit: National Air and Space Museum, Smithsonian Institution

The tail fins of an arrow or dart serve as horizontal and vertical stabilizers, correcting pitch and yaw to keep the projectile in line with its direction of flight. Since an arrow or dart is symmetrical in cross section, it does not need roll stability—it can rotate freely about its long axis. This darts game is a replica of one flown aboard Skylab, a manned space station launched into Earth orbit by the United States in May 1973.

Explore Activities & Multimedia