Episode #210 "Beezarre"

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gmarshall
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Episode #210 "Beezarre"

Postby gmarshall » Wed Oct 27, 2010 3:15 am

Don't know if you guys saw the video of the glider crash.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zxbulrrQVig

Apparently really crummy weather, very gusty. Low altitude turn plus maybe a gust of wind resulting in the stall/wing drop.

As for how he fared... In my opinion the fact that it wasn't a straight on impact, and the one wingtip hit the ground first turning some of the forward energy into rotational energy helped a lot. Obviously low airspeed was a key factor.

Jeb wondered how much structure was in front of the pilot's feet. The answer is very VERY little. The feet are as far up into the nose cone as the size of the shoes and action of the rudder pedals permit on high performance gliders.

As for the relative safety of modern composite gliders, I've heard on multiple occasions that the cockpit is designed to absorb impact energy, having extra structure strictly for that purpose. This is usually not true of most vintage metal gliders. Not necessarily a difference in materials, but just improved design. Composites may allow a smaller weight penalty for the same safety benefit, perhaps.

It's been asked how the aircraft is supposed to protect your feet if they're at the very front of the fuselage which is designed to crumple. :) Formula 1 drivers are in the same situation, their feet actually hang forward outside of the carbon fibre safety cell 'tub'.

Going back to the video, it's easy to arm chair quarterback and say that he shouldn't have banked as steeply, or should have been more open to a downwind landing or overshooting the runway, or even have put the glider straight in to whatever happened to be in front of him (trees), but I think it's possible that he was carrying what would normally be *plenty* of energy for the maneuvers he attempted but just came up too low, too slow when the fickle winds took away his gust factor and then some...

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jackhodgson
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Re: Episode #210 "Beezarre"

Postby jackhodgson » Wed Oct 27, 2010 12:58 pm

Didn't realize that video existed. Thanks. We'll probably extend the conversation a bit in a future ep.

// Jack

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dansmusicuk1
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Re: Episode #210 "Beezarre"

Postby dansmusicuk1 » Fri Oct 29, 2010 3:52 am

Hi Guys

I know the pilots from the Swift Aerobatic Display Team, and in my opinion they put on one of the best displays in the UK.
We use them evey year at my local airfield for our charity air day.

Unfortunatly even the very best glider pilots can get caught out on extreamly gusty days at low level.
Have a look at some of these performances if you want to see what they are really all about.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=enGgq1HkQBY

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rgm58X61qAw

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MfGYiPOfzgY&p=DD4269155BD71E24&playnext=1&index=40

Still loving the podcast in the UK

Dan G

Skyhawk
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Re: Episode #210 "Beezarre"

Postby Skyhawk » Fri Oct 29, 2010 10:35 pm

jackhodgson wrote:Didn't realize that video existed. Thanks. We'll probably extend the conversation a bit in a future ep.

// Jack


I posted this video on your very own forum on Sept. 07. viewtopic.php?f=8&t=1609 :roll:
Real aeroplanes have batteries and starter motors.

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baswell
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Re: Episode #210 "Beezarre"

Postby baswell » Sat Oct 30, 2010 5:54 am

Comment when I showed it to one of my friends, a high time glider pilot and instructor. He had seen this one before:

The backstory is that it was an airshow characterized by horrendous
weather (gusty 40 kt winds, low cloud, etc), with most of the acts
staying on the ground. He chose to fly anyway, thought better of
it after a few hundred feet of aerotow, released, then caught himself
in a position where he had to dash downwind to position for a
landing that wouldn't crash into the crowd.

Gliders have long wings; A steep angle of bank near the ground
can cause the "lower" wing to have less aileron authority and
lift than the "upper" wing due to airspeed differences caused by
the near-ground wind gradient. He couldn't level-out from the low
steep turn in time to avoid contact with the ground.

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jackhodgson
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Re: Episode #210 "Beezarre"

Postby jackhodgson » Sat Oct 30, 2010 7:43 pm

Skyhawk,

Oops sorry, I missed it back then.

// Jack

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isnoop
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Re: Episode #210 "Beezarre"

Postby isnoop » Mon Nov 01, 2010 9:30 pm

Let's talk about LiPo batteries...

Lithium polymer batteries are as likely to combust when exposed to air/water as table salt. Pure lithium, like pure sodium, reacts with water (or water vapor), but the stuff in the battery is a relatively stable molecule with Li as just one component: LiMn2O4 or LiCoO2

LiPo batteries, especially those designed for rapid discharge, do overheat quickly when shorted. In the right circumstances, the core temperature can reach the material's flash point which is where the "exploding" battery phenomena occurs.

Long before the original Macbook Pros captured the public's attention with their pyrotechnics, RC heli and airplane flyers were warned to cut all throttle controls as soon as they crashed their LiPo-powered birds lest they overheat the battery as it tries to drive a jammed motor. I witnessed the immediate aftermath of an RC heli crash where the flyer was too stunned to let off the throttle and the little chopper burst into flames taking part of the hobby store sideyard with it.

In short: Don't short out your LiPo. Treat it like any other device capable of storing enough energy to run an incandescent bulb for a full hour. A battery rated for 60WH is theoretically capable of producing 216,000 watts for one very hot second.
--Ian

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PilotBillFromTexas
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Re: Episode #210 "Beezarre"

Postby PilotBillFromTexas » Tue Nov 02, 2010 8:20 pm

It's interesting that in the investigation regarding the UPS crash in the UAE, they cited lithium batteries specifically in the last paragraph of the CNN report:

"The cause of the fire is unknown, one official said. One thing investigators are looking at is lithium batteries, which are known to have been on the flight. Even if the lithium batteries were not the source of the fire, they could have made it worse if they were burned."

No terror link so far in UPS crash in Dubai, official says

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ATC_Ben
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Re: Episode #210 "Beezarre"

Postby ATC_Ben » Wed Nov 03, 2010 9:00 pm

PilotBillFromTexas wrote:"The cause of the fire is unknown, one official said. One thing investigators are looking at is lithium batteries, which are known to have been on the flight. Even if the lithium batteries were not the source of the fire, they could have made it worse if they were burned."


Yes but the same could have been said for the fuel in the tanks, the crew O2, the magnesium in the wheels, etc, etc... near everything on your average airliner is not going to help the situation if you have a fire and it starts to spread, except maybe the fire bottles.

This is why an aircraft that has burned on the ground is normally reduced to a smoldering pile of rubble, because everything burns and it makes for an extremely hot fire that the fire services can barely contain and certainly not extinguish! Remember what was left of the Air Canada DC9 with the seized toilet motor??
Caelus latus sursum

Biggles71
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Re: Episode #210 "Beezarre"

Postby Biggles71 » Thu Nov 04, 2010 5:19 am

Guys,

Listened to the discussion on the Li batteries regarding the N registered UPS B747 crash in Dubai early September. I was at the front line of this accident.

Surprisingly there was very little media coverage about the crash, especially within the US... Guess it only killed 2 people! RIP...

Anyway, I work and live (Belgian national) in Dubai where I fly A330 and A340's (soon A380's) as a training captain for Emirates and live in a villa compound where 700 of our 2600 pilots live, very close to the B747 crash site.
I happened to be home the night of the crash, when I heard the B747-400 overfly my house at an estimated 200 to 300 ft. Running outside the front door, I saw the aircraft crashing just outside our villa compound just seconds later. Without doubt the most disturbing thing I've ever witnessed!

A week later, I wrote a tribute blogpost about the two US pilots that died in the crash. Feel free to have a read on my photography site:
http://bjornmoerman.blogspot.com/2010/0 ... g-and.html

Fly safe,
BJORN
Flying was my first love and it will be my last one!


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