Home Your notes are welcome: Editor@UpperWindpower.com Most recent edit: Thursday October 25, 2012
Manned or unmanned. Any size. Passive, active, or robotic (or
Kiting manned gliders
Kiting unmanned gliders, perhaps for cargo transport
Free-flight kite hang gliding
During the free flight of the all-canopy gliding wing or the stiffened parawing, the pilot is hung and become the primary potential energy source for kiting the wings; as the fall of the the pilot occurs, the wing resistance sets up tension in the tether set and kiting principle is functioned with the purpose of net travel through the skies in a kite-gliding experience.
These kite hang gliders may be doubly kited by being towed from ground anchors or aerial anchors like a towing powered aircraft (manned or robot). The system without the second kiting action is a kite system itself; then tow the payload of the primary system and obtain still kiting-principle function.
Gliders have long been routinely towed for launching and ferrying, which are kite-modes. Small gliders are often tether-launched, and operate as kites while "on-hook". Most large gliders have been piloted (a few were passive cargo trailers). Their tow-planes or winches usually acted as active peer-to-peer control agents, or at the direction of the pilot-on-board. This heritage represents a vast body of well-documented prior-art with gliders on tethers.
Bridle geometry for conventional towing is more forward than a rearward tow-point for maximum power extraction, so stock gliders will need retrofitted tow-points for AWE. Stability is good, provided good piloting and low turbulence conditions. Yes, in principle two lines can be fitted, and flight control actuated from servo-inputs from the ground, to fly "like a stunt-kite". A split bridle span-wise really helps span-load the wing to the max. Hot gliders are fantastic performers, but more challenging to fly, very unforgiving of mistakes, and this reality applies to tethered gliders as well.
The best review of these topics is the AWES Forum, with hundreds of related posts. JoeF in particular is the Guru of "Gliders as Kites" in AWE. Source: http://tech.groups.yahoo.com/group/AirborneWindEnergy/message/6972
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