Robert: Good analogy. While cars and airplanes grow more complex every year, both started with an inherently stable physical configuration. Let go of theMessage 1 of 4 , Mar 7, 2012View SourceRobert:
While cars and airplanes grow more complex every year, both started with an inherently stable physical configuration. Let go of the controls of either, and the car will roll to a stop, while an airplane will continue to travel in a straight line.
Computer controls now allow us to create a physical "house of cards" dependent on computers for its stability. But wind turbines, with the 24/7/365 operation in winds that vary in power from a feather touch to the power of racing engines and power plants, have the highest requirement for longevity and inherent stability of any system known.
While a system basing its basic, inherent stability on complexity and computer algorithms, including the idea that this data stream will never fail, is possible nowadays, is it the future? Is it a good idea? Or is inherent physical stability still the best starting point?
--- In AirborneWindEnergy@yahoogroups.com, Robert Copcutt <r@...> wrote:
> Most of us are doing our best to keep our AWES prototypes as simple as
> possible. It keeps costs down but we sacrifice robustness. The blog
> dated January 19, 2012 at the bottom of the page explains this rather
> A quote of the critical paragraph (hope it comes through);
A tree leaf is pretty simple. Its primary job is to catch sunlight, but in a high wind, it turns into a narrow cone, saving both itself and its supportMessage 1 of 4 , Mar 7, 2012View SourceA tree leaf is pretty simple. Its primary job is to catch sunlight, but in a high wind, it turns into a narrow cone, saving both itself and its support structure. A kite array might use struts that can buckle to reduce loads, and recover elastically when the wind drops substantially. Members with a range of load limits could progressively modify an array to keep the tether load near constant over a wide range of wind.I do prefer inherent physical stability to reliance on computer intelligence, but it does come at a cost. The dihedral of airplane wings wastes some lift.Bob StuartOn 7-Mar-12, at 9:19 AM, Doug wrote: