Commuting Kite-Planes for Offshore AWES Solutions
These offshore ideas expand on earlier Forum
discussion of onshore Energy-Aircraft that commute to kite-fields from
production and maintenance facilities.
We define a kite-plane as a high performance rigid-wing aircraft that
operates from a tether. They have been proposed as suitable for offshore
AWES, but no one has explained how they would survive adverse conditions
like storms, salt-vapor, and even sea-bird poop, or be maintained properly
and economically at sea, in such extreme exposed conditions.
A set of solutions consistent with aviation science and practice is for
offshore energy kite-planes to commute into place, in rhythm with good
conditions, and regularly withdraw (perhaps even a few times a week) to a
nearby onshore airport, landing conventionally, for constant inspections
and easy hangar maintenance. Modern weather forecasting enables good
predictability within the operational latency of aviation operations.
The kiteplanes could be towed back and forth by seatow or aerotow. They
might even be based from an Energy-Aircraft-Carrier supporting maintenance
and repair, that itself commutes to port for storms with the entire
"flock". The kiteplanes might swoop and use a sort of "boat-hook" to pick
up a floating tether, much as common banner towing is done. The kite-plane
might best carry its flying-tether on a storage reel. All "wet" rigging
infrastructure could withdraw below storms. Different flying platforms
might deploy according to seasonal and frontal cycles.
There would be no need for massive landing-cradle buoys (taller than storm
waves), shock-proof cradle landings, E-VTOL , and all associated design
Comment and development of this topic will be occurring here.
All, send notes, links, drawings, papers, videos, plans, safety-critical
findings, and photographs!
- Terms and aspects:
- kiteplanes or kite-planes
- seatow or sea tow
- Related links and concepts:
- Commentary is welcome: