Rise of the Dragon

2012 is the Year of the Dragon. The traditionally auspicious Zodiac sign has Prime Minister Lee fervently hoping for a bountiful harvest of babies. The fascination with dragons probably comes from their herculean look of power and strength. Let’s see some estimates of dragon power!

Technically, for a dragon flying over a speed of 0 to 160 km/h, it’s power requirements are about as follows:

Speed, km/h0163248648096112128144160
Power, kW3836292319171719222733

If the dragon were to loiter near an area, e.g. around its prey, optimal loiter speed (least energy/time) is 88 km/h. Pretty much like a car on the PIE or ECP. Optimal travel speed (least energy/distance) is about 112 km/h. If the dragon were to dive towards its prey on the ground and reaches terminal velocity (where air resistance = weight), it would be moving at about 724 km/h, which is close to that of an SIA aircraft in the air.