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Re: What Does Complexity Acheive?

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  • Doug
    Robert: Good analogy. While cars and airplanes grow more complex every year, both started with an inherently stable physical configuration. Let go of the
    Message 1 of 4 , Mar 7, 2012
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      Robert:
      Good analogy.
      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?
      Doug S.

      --- 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
      > well.
      > http://herdingcats.typepad.com/my_weblog/
      >
      > A quote of the critical paragraph (hope it comes through);
      >
      > Robert.
      >
    • Bob Stuart
      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 support
      Message 2 of 4 , Mar 7, 2012
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        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 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 Stuart

        On 7-Mar-12, at 9:19 AM, Doug wrote:

        Robert:
        Good analogy.
        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?
        Doug S.

        --- 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
        > well.
        > http://herdingcats.typepad.com/my_weblog/
        > 
        > A quote of the critical paragraph (hope it comes through);
        > 
        > Robert.
        >


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