Announcing the Experimental Soaring Association Western Workshop 2018

Discussion in 'Upcoming Events and Trip Reports' started by Topaz, Aug 19, 2018.

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  1. Aug 25, 2018 #21

    Topaz

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    That may be a possibility but, again, I'm not in a position to make that decision for the organization. Since the days when Paul MacCready and other luminaries were still with us, this event has been geared as a conference and workshop, oriented to meeting in-person and sharing ideas and results face-to-face. As much or more information gets passed along informally over dinner and breakfast as at the lectures, and there's no substitute for walking outside and seeing the airplane or engine being talked about "in the flesh." While the modern world has changed and telepresence is more expected, changing the direction of this particular ship involves overcoming decades of institutional inertia, and I'm not entirely sure I disagree with their viewpoint on what the event should be, anyway. Just watching the presentations or reading the slide decks rather misses the point of the exercise, however interesting and informative they are.

    Still, I've made the suggestion regarding YouTube. Others have done the same regarding a webinar. If either option (or slide-decks) becomes available, you'll hear about it here ASAP.
     
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2018
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  2. Aug 25, 2018 #22

    blane.c

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    Any way of knowing which day and time the Prandtl Wing Minimum Drag Update will be.
     
  3. Aug 25, 2018 #23

    Topaz

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    As a matter of fact, yes! A full and up-to-date schedule is up on the ESA website calendar page, at this link. Both the date and time of each lecture is listed (scroll down - it's "below the fold"), along with the schedule for other events, links to maps of local accommodations, area restaurants, etc.
     
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  4. Aug 25, 2018 #24

    blane.c

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    I see BOKU is going to be speaking on sat. as well, interesting.
     
  5. Aug 25, 2018 #25

    Victor Bravo

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    I just sent the president of ESA a personal e-mail supporting the Youtube idea. I cannot see any downside to this, especially if (as Topaz has said) soomeone has volunteered to fund or facilitate the technology. I will not post a private e-mail here, but for Blane's sake please trust I made as strong of a case for it as I believe could be made :)
     
  6. Sep 4, 2018 #26

    Topaz

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    The 2018 Experimental Soaring Association Western Workshop was a huge success this year. We had a really great slate of speakers on a variety of topics, from how to increase participation in aviation and soaring, to our own Boku's (Bob Kuykendall) delightfully fun and inspiring presentation on development teamwork, to the latest and highest-level mathematical developments adapting Prandtl's Lifting-Line theory to swept wings with dihedral. (The math on that latter was WAY over my head, but it was fascinating nonetheless). The weather cooperated, so we had several people fly in with aircraft ranging from a beautiful Cub to an amazing scratch-built custom-design motorglider, the Caro I. Mountain Valley Airport is a very active soaring center (and has been for decades), so there was a near-constant drone of tow-planes in the background, hauling sailplanes aloft for flights. A lot of those gliders didn't come back for a very long time. Soaring was good this weekend!

    EDIT: I have a small album of photos from the event posted here. It's in Google Photos. You don't need that software to view them, but we had a few who had technical issues with that platform the last time I posted an album like this. I hope Google's resolved that for you.

    We had several HBA members in attendance, including Boku, Victor Bravo, Pete Plumb, Rienk, and myself. If you were there and I've somehow missed listing you, please let me know!

    And...

    Wait for it...

    Most of the presentations* were video "taped" (I'm not sure what you say when the capture is all-digital), and the ESA leadership has given their blessing for their ever-overwhelmed webmaster (who shall remain... me) to edit the video and prepare a YouTube channel for the organization to post some or all of the talks so captured. I have the SD card with all the video sitting here on my desk as we "speak". I also have a listing of the e-mail addresses of all the presenters, and my first step is to contact them and gain their permission to post the videos to our channel. I already have verbal permission from Al Bowers and Richard Starke to post their presentations. "All" I have to do after that is to load the video off the chip onto my system, confirm that it's useable (I didn't shoot it, and haven't seen any of it yet), and then do the light editing necessary to get it up on YouTube. This is my usual long-winded way of asking for your patience. It's going to take a little while to get all of this done, especially in light of the workload in my "regular" business right now. But it's coming. We also discussed the idea of a live pay-per-view webinar broadcast for next year (the charge will be minimal, trust me), and there seems to be some traction for that idea. Stay tuned.

    ------------------------------
    * We definitely lost part of Kathleen Fredette's presentation, and possibly that of Jack Norris, due to technical difficulties with the camera. Unfortunately, Rol Klingberg had to cancel his presentation at the last minute. As far as I know, the remaining presentations were successfully captured, pending my being able to actually review the video.
     
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2018
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  7. Sep 4, 2018 #27

    Hot Wings

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    praising-the-lord-smiley-emoticon.gif wings.gif begging.gif
     
  8. Sep 4, 2018 #28

    Topaz

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    Heh. You're welcome. Presuming the video is good, we have Al Bower's presentation and his permission to post it (the presentation was already cleared for public release by NASA, and Al was happy to have us put it up). Dr. Bower's presentation this year was particularly good - his research into alternative lift distributions and induced drag is really coming together - and his explanation was such that I finally "got" an important part of his point this time. He's definitely on to something here. I have yet to really determine its general and arbitrary applicability (barring some kind of wing with variable-geometry in terms of twist, it may only be useful for designs with a very strong "single point" of optimization, unless I'm misunderstanding something badly), but there's no doubt that there is some serious drag reduction that can be obtained by the right application.

    The Lifting Line Theory with Sweep and Dihedral presentation was done by Don Crawford (for those of you who have his books, yes, that Donald R. Crawford) and it's the one that about burst my head with mathematics far above my pay grade. When I guy can point to a double-integral equation with a "Jacobian" and say, "Well, down here this could create a singularity, so I had to use some advanced mathematics that I won't show today," you just shake your head and realize you're out of your class... :gig: As I understood it, and in a layman's nutshell (and trust me, I may be entirely wrong), he's attempting to provide the mathematical basis to successfully apply Prandtl's lifting-line theory for lift distributions to wings with either sweep or dihedral, or both. The work is apparently not quite done, but he says he's getting close.

    We got that one on video, too, for those of you at a level to understand it. Same caveat on unknown video quality and as-yet-unobtained permission.
     
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2018
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  9. Sep 4, 2018 #29

    Hot Wings

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    By Prandtl I'm presuming his 1932 paper?

    drooling-dog.gif

    Edit:
    "When I guy can point to a double-integral equation with a "Jacobian" "

    Now you made my brain hurt - but I actually kind of like it and I can see how it would be useful for this subject.
     
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2018
  10. Sep 4, 2018 #30

    Topaz

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    Apparently the paper in question is actually from 1933 but, yes, it's the later, lesser-known one by Prandtl that covers non-elliptical lift distributions. The one Dr. Bowers has been working with, as the basis for his own work. (Again, as I understood it,) Crawford is trying to put the theoretical underpinnings beneath applying Prandtl's 1933 paper to wings with sweep and/or dihedral. You know, no big deal, just the "holy grail" of the entire swept-flying-wing community, not to mention the airliner industry. :nervous: I'm sure empirical solutions have been developed by the latter, but they'd all be closely held and Crawford's work would provide a direct solution for any arbitrary case.

    Yeah, you should've been there. The talk was a marvel, but it should've come with a bottle of Advil. ;)
     
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2018
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  11. Sep 5, 2018 #31

    Victor Bravo

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    The genius of Al Bowers is that he can make the results of all that head-hurting math understandable by common folk, distilling out real-world "mechanical" benefits that guys like me can understand. It is absolutely clear that what Al is really doing is reconciling and connecting what science and math figured out in the past, to what nature has known for millennia, to what air wants and needs to do while flowing around a wing regardless of who knows it, to the real-world simple results that make an aircraft perform better.

    Al Bowers' enthusiasm and joy in his work, at this stage of his career where he's retiring in a few months, is awe-inspiring. This is the kind of senior researcher whose young interns (several of whom were there) are going to be tomorrow's truly brilliant scientists. Being around Al, an average airport bum like me feels like he is having coffee with Einstein, who happens to be in the mood to make everyone else as smart as Einstein.
     
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  12. Sep 5, 2018 #32

    blane.c

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    Having a 55 foot wingspan 1,874lb flying wing powered by 3 Pegasus O-100's. That's my "nut"shell.
     
  13. Sep 5, 2018 #33

    Topaz

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    You're going to make Pete Plum very happy. :grin:
     
  14. Sep 5, 2018 #34

    Victor Bravo

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    1/3 scale Ju-52???
     
  15. Sep 9, 2018 #35

    blane.c

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    No fuselage {or vestige necessary for human(s)}, pusher engines not tractors, retractable gear not fixed, streamlined not "lumpy and bumpy", fast not slow, otherwise yes pretty much the same.
     
  16. Sep 9, 2018 #36

    blane.c

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    Looking forward to the video posting and have stocked up on headache relievers.
     
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  17. Oct 25, 2018 #37

    Topaz

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    My seasonal B2B catalog workflow has finally settled down (yay, invoicing!), and I've been able to start editing and posting the lecture videos from the 2018 Experimental Soaring Association Western Workshop.

    There are six videos currently posted on the ESA YouTube channel, including lectures by Al Bowers and our own "Boku", Bob Kuykendall. There are approximately twenty lectures in total, and I'll be posting them as I get the editing completed and permission from the speakers to post them publicly. If you would like notification of those future postings, please subscribe to the ESA YouTube channel.

    The channel is at this link: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCG9NEZfEDe8ro4oqtXpXQQg

    Enjoy!
     
  18. Oct 25, 2018 #38

    blane.c

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    Cool!
     
  19. Oct 25, 2018 #39

    Hot Wings

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  20. Oct 26, 2018 #40

    lr27

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    Thanks for putting up the videos. Al Bowers looks older and heavier than I remember. Kind of like that guy in the mirror. Haven't really sat down for all of video yet, but I will.
     

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