CoolIP index                                                          Most recent edit: Sunday June 16, 2013

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Flying Carbon-Sandwich "UltraBelts"

This "UtraRope" is properly seen as an "ultra-belt". The advantage of a structural-fiber belt is in aggregating threads for great strength and power, but without excess thickness, allowing for smaller pullies and bullwheels. To make such a belt according to sailmaking norms, unwetted (non-prepreg) carbon fiber is sandwiched between two or more thin-film membranes. This allows a high fatigue life. Quality nanotubes are on the way to further revolutionize performance.

For AWE, a thin-film/fiber belt-drive tilted to windward (hung from kites tethered to windward) could helpfully develop its own lift (upforce). Upwind ground tethering would be conventional line, for minimal negative lift (downforce). Perhaps stabilizer/tensioner units along the belt would be a standard component. Ultrabelts might run at hundreds of miles per hour for maximum transmission.

Ultrabelts are also suited as loadpaths embedded in megascale soft-kites. Similar but smaller structural ribbons are already well known in composite construction, but the Ultra-Rope version is by far the biggest and strongest yet proposed. COTS carbon belts would be suited to reinforce airplane wings at lowered cost.

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  • Terms and aspects:   
  • Related links and concepts:
    • [ ] LineEncyclopedia
    • [ ] Glossary:  ultrarope, ultrabelt
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