Roadable aircraft

Discussion in 'Aircraft Design / Aerodynamics / New Technology' started by Topaz, Jun 30, 2006.

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  1. May 7, 2013 #581

    Aircar

    Aircar

    Aircar

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    Like the old adage says ;if it first you don't succeed...keep on upping the ante; --so it seems anyway . Without first getting something working despite scads of money it looks like the idea is to 'release' a newer and glitzier model . Paul Moller has added new models from a flying Ferrari with lift fans to various other military and 'upgraded' offerings --his prototype still firmly anchored to the ground and doing nice TED talks, selling stock etc -- Jay Carter has 'released' new versions of his Cartercopter --from huge machines able to lift a tank or scores of people (bigger than the old Fairey rotodyne even) to a range of ;Personal Air Vehicles of various sizes . Same goes for several other people offering revolutionary concepts . I don't fault them for showing possible applications of their proprietary technology but it would be nice to see a WORKING proof of concept ,prototype acheiving it's design goals and meeting a market need .

    It definitely harms this field (roadability) to have so much claiming and still unproven technology even after being funded (just reading the story of the creation of the "Maltese Falcon' Megayacht with a new kind of sail rig built for Ted Perkins, one of the silicon valley entrepreneurs who applied his 'try it small first and don't proceed if that doesn't work out ' school of venture capital --Burt Rutan made a living from doing 'prove out' designs even though none of them found a market , the homebuilt freedoms are ideal for doing experimental investigation at low relative cost but too many non scientific (non experimental) and non working concepts are being promoted with slick CGI and ballyhoo. The single picture of the TF-X; (the name of the F 111 program actually) doesn't show enough of anything to be evaluated but looks very 'artistic' ...

    Incidentally, I just transcribed the radio 'talkback' program that I referred to from yesterday --it arose from a story in the newspaper about gridlock on the main north south arterial road in Melbourne and how new studies had failed to find a solution --an earlier caller texted ;'how about flying cars '; to which the host dismissively laughed it off with a few wisecracks -- I heard that and rang, as I put it, to defend the flying car but the whole thing was sandwiched between other scheduled stories and had to be done off the cuff with a very cynical presenter --hopefully it didn't come over too badly ( I intend to ask for the right to respond and might thereby get some unhurried and non snide airtime to put the case clearly.

    Let me know if you can open this link and get to hear the exchange , please.

    the website is www.abc.net.au/melbourne/programs/melbourne_mornings -- go to 8.30am mornings with jon faine and listen to the audio associated with the ";Hoddle street still a car park"; segment -- the bit where I came in is 10.04 minutes from the end and goes till about 6.50 minutes (and the 'human cannonball' quip that so amused the host is nearer the end . I didn't get his joke about the 'right calibre' of people till afterward ...very droll.

    Anybody who might want to phone the station in defence of the flying car concept is welcome to phone in (quite a few callers from overseas are carried on the show .......

    There is something wrong with the software -every quote (inverted commas) comes out as :quote and I cannot undo it by edditting.sorry bout that.
     
  2. May 7, 2013 #582

    BBerson

    BBerson

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    Apparently selling hope is more fun ( and less liability)than selling actual aircraft.
    That VTOL should keep them funded for decades (or more).
     
  3. May 9, 2013 #583

    Aircar

    Aircar

    Aircar

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    Has anybody listened to the radio talkback segment yet ? ( Amazingly the Terrafugia TFx got a write up in the same newspaper that was being quoted from two days before that led to my chipping in ) It would be nice to hear if it was heard by anybody (you get to hear me 'in the flesh' as it were also...
     
  4. May 9, 2013 #584

    bmcj

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    I heard it Ross. You made some good points, but I think your downfall might have been bringing up so many launch and recovery options to someone who doesn't even understand the basics of personal aviation. Sometimes, the best thing to do is be overly general in some of your points, like saying that "there are numerous methods of powering, launching and recovering the craft, but the technologies needed are commonplace today."

    BTW, good job overall... had it been me speaking, I would have been terribly tongue-tied and terror-struck from speaking publicly.

    Bruce :)
     
  5. May 9, 2013 #585

    oriol

    oriol

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    This is the link of the radio program in wich Aircar/Ross spoke, It´s about 10:00.

    Hoddle Street, still a car park; Anxiety is not a personality trait; Solar power efficiency breakthrough - ABC Victoria - Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC)


    I guess it is very complicated to be pedagogical and explain all the posible issues (ATOL, legal, flying skills...) related with a flying car to an audience with no aviation background in just a few minutes of improvised conversation: without the aid of photographs and videos to be able to provide a clear explanation based in tangible facts.



    Oriol
     
  6. May 9, 2013 #586

    BBerson

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    That radio program seems stuck on the intro only... I did not hear anything from Aircar.
     
  7. May 10, 2013 #587

    oriol

    oriol

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    You can hear Aircar starting speaking ten minutes before the program finishes.



    Oriol
     
  8. May 11, 2013 #588

    henryk

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  9. May 12, 2013 #589

    lurker

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    yesterday (saturday) i saw a news report of a maverick 'roadable aircraft' crashing into a tree near a school in british columbia, canada. both occupants were injured though not severely, no one killed. i'd provide a link but now i can't find any reports. curious.
     
  10. May 13, 2013 #590

    bmcj

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    Here's one:
    Maverick 'Flying Car' Crashes In Canada

    My first thought was engine failure, but after reading the article, it sounds more like control issues (or exceeding it's safe maneuvering limits).
     
  11. May 14, 2013 #591

    henryk

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  12. May 14, 2013 #592

    henryk

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  13. May 15, 2013 #593

    Aircar

    Aircar

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    Thanks for the feedback Bruce and Oriol (one likes to think that ones's adoring public is out there listening in) -- as noted it was extremely brief and curtailed -I tried to head off his 'obvious' arguments (too noisey like a Harrier (or a TFX..) and too difficult etc plus need airstrips etc ) -the sailplane quiet point was to go on to the 'silent' Vietnam stealth powred gliders Lockheed YO3A --and the 'land on a cable ' (array) was to mention the Brodie system on WW2 (that sucessfully detected the planned suicide attack by explosive laden PT boats from caves on Iwo Jima thereby fulfilling it's major design goal [ship protection] -anyway the host was intent on finishing his 'human canonball quip so I tried to make the most of the few seconds I had while the shepherd's crook was appearing off stage...

    A little later another caller in added to his joke "did you hear about the bearded lady killed as a human cannonball?" - "police said it was a freak accident" -no getting over Australian humour.... several days later again someone rang in ( I didn't hear it) to protest at how negative the host was and how I was cut off --still have to get back to the station for a rematch...

    The Maverick accident is bad news (plunging into a schoolground only inflames the nighmare visions the public has ) - I have had only one flight in a powered chute which was in freezing rain and low cloud --as long as you are going into wind the survivability will be very high but the controllability does not impress me (Isn't Oriol a pendular pilot ? maybe he can add some real experience )
     
  14. May 15, 2013 #594

    Aircar

    Aircar

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    Henryk - you already posted a better link to the BMW front suspension --it takes most of the bending out of the front teleforks which is good for control and might be applicable tyo a roadable since it saves weight also.
     
  15. May 15, 2013 #595

    henryk

    henryk

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    Hossack Front Wheel Drive Design by Norman Hossack

    =idea=NO teleforks \with possibility of 2-wheel drive!\
     
  16. May 15, 2013 #596

    autoreply

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    You did a remarkable (good) job Ross, as hard as it is.

    Just a bit disturbing, that accent... funny how one makes up a mental picture of others only known over the interwebs ;)
     
  17. May 15, 2013 #597

    BBerson

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    I listened to the radio archive for several hours. Just played bits over and over, never got to Ross... I gave up.

    i know he was near end of program, but my screen had no time display to show end.
     
  18. May 15, 2013 #598

    henryk

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  19. May 15, 2013 #599

    bmcj

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  20. May 15, 2013 #600

    oriol

    oriol

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    I don´t have a lot of experience in flying conventional three axis airplanes, so I can not properly compare a standard ULM versus a pendular one and determine if a system is better than the other. However from my personal experience, both pendular and three axis airplanes, of the same weight category, can withstand similar meteorological conditions.


    In favor of trikes I can say that they can afford to land in less prepared terrains, because of the pendular effect, the three wheels of the landing gear almost touch the ground at once. Unlike 3 axis it is very complicated to break one of the arms of the landing gear on a hard landing, with cross wind etc... Of course pendulars are less demanding to land than taildraggers, the pilot has more visibility, it requires less procedure/training.
    In short: it is more intruitive to operate a pendular you don´t even have to check the instruments to know (aprox) at what speed you are flying.


    Maybe one bad aspect of pendulars, is that because of the pilot acting directly over the aerodynamic controls (without several pulleys or lever arms) if flying in turbulent conditions you soon get your arms tired of applying force to stabilize the airplane. However if flying on non turbulent conditions, I believe pendulars to be more agile and easy when maneuvering at low speeds close to the ground.


    I think the pendular option is a very interesting one for a PALV. Despite the fact that most people who already have a pilot´s license consider pendulars to be a step backwards because they are not as performing as the new generation of ultralights and also for aesthetical reasons: they don´t look as sophisticated/glamourous as full enclosed airplanes. Average people, with no aviation background, won´t feel as intimidated by the challenge of learning to fly an open cockpit airplane with almost no intruments (see picture below) than to fly a "modern" new generation of ultralight, with a cabin similar to that of a fighter/airliner.



    Oriol

    Pit-trike-Manfred-01.jpg Airbus_A380_cockpit.jpg
     
    Last edited: May 16, 2013

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