Most recent edit:
Saturday March 16, 2013
* See legal note below.
Flap-Valve as Aero-Diode to Tap Vertical-Lapse of the
One-way flap-valves for
parafoil ram-air inlets are gaining in popularity (eg. HQ Hydra). There is
a far larger AWES application possible for the flap-valve mechanism in
large kite meshes.
Imagine a kite skin that is composed of flap-valves. It would act as a
one-way gate to flow. In a turbulent wind field, the valves can sort
scrambled flow into a coherent force polarity. A simple way to make a
valved-skin is with a back-up mesh covered with fabric flaps on one side.
The mesh supports the flaps in closed mode, and the flaps open freely when
the flow reverses. A similar case is a kite with an elastic aft-bridle to
comply with gusts.
A particular megascale application opportunity is to tap the Intertropical
Convergence Zone (ITCZ). While its horizontal flow is often weak, its
vertical instability is full of energy. A megascale tent-like dome made of
an open mesh of flap-valve surfaces could self-sustain flight and
aggregate wind-power. The thermals within its area would propel it upward,
while the down-drafts would by-pass. The lattice must span the
characteristic dimension of the turbulence cells to ensure the presence of
lifting air. Note that with rising air, the greatest Drag-to-Weight ratio
is favored. The lifting force is already in the flow.
This idea has slowly emerged to try to solve ITCZ AWES design challenges.
Its rather grand to be able to contemplate an airborne lattice-work that
thrives in a stormy vertical convection fields by the simplest of embodied
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:
- Related links and concepts:
- Commentary is welcome:
Note: coolIP is hereby defined as a Creative-Commons Unported NonCommercial
so now we are integrated with the latest
standard cooperative IP model, but "coolIP" remains a nice shorthand.