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Ladder kite

The attached sketch is not of a LadderMill, but an optimized soft version of a Jacob's Ladder kite. Its intended to maximally tap the wind lift within a given altitude from a single anchor. The kite is an integrated stack of single-skin "minimal-surface geometry" wings after the manner of Barish or Culp. A smaller pilot-lifter to initiate controlled launch is seen at the "head". To kill the kite the two side lines would be eased, with the center "brake" line keep tight, allowing it to come down easily under the pilot-lifter.
This sort of monster kite might make a great architectural habitat, lift megaloads, host AWECS, etc.

CoolIP                       ~Dave Santos                 25October2011          AWE4544

Comment and development of this topic will be occurring here.       
All, send notes, drawings, and photographs!

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  • Let the resistive anchor be a free-falling mass and have yourself a ladder paraglider, manned or unmanned, a true gliding kite system.

    And introducing the free-moving anchor version of Ladder Kite: 

    Ladder Paraglider, a gliding kite system featuring various laddered wings (sub-wing count: 2 or more up to thousands of rungs; each ladder rung may be sized for purposes; rung wings may be soft, medium soft, hard, or even LTA.  Open garden for explorers ...

    The gliding kite with Ladder Kite  has its anchor moving (a bit more than a moving hand or running-skipping-jumping human mooring) freely by the tug of gravity; the tug tenses the kite line set as the Ladder Kite does its wonderful thing via L/D aeromechanics. Build in whatever passive or active controls one wishes. Add RATs to the Ladder Paraglider, if you wish. Have underwater analogue with the paravane Ladder Paraglider.  Operate these at any scale manned or unmanned on earth or in planetary atmospheres or fluid spheres. Consider a version that sails with the plasmas of the universe.

    JoeF,     So what you see is that flight can be sustained by a "pumping" mass tethered under a wing? Congratulations, that seems like a New Flight Mode, although much ornithopter flight is closely related. High L/D helps, so the soft ladderkite is not so promising (L/D~3) except if opposed by a hot kiteplane flying patterns.
    Consider if the "moving anchor" mass were a wing also. We knew two wings tethered to each other could sustain flight in wind shear. We seem to have overlooked that they could sustain flight by pumping against each other. The balanced dancing kite folks might have spotted this. Your insight opens up a lot of new ponderings.
    Thanks for the latest wizardly breakthrough
    PS Note that the TACO relates existing aircraft engine regs to the tether as an "engine" force (logical inheritance), as inspired by your previous "moving anchor" insights as to what a kite is. All aircraft are kites, seen by your perspective...

    [[ED: tension versus torque ?]]

  • One-rung is preamble to multi-rung ladder.