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11816Peter Lynn moves into Single-Skin Pilot-Lifter Kites

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  • dave santos
    Mar 4, 2014

      Its very exciting to see Peter Lynn intensely focused on perfecting single-skin (SS) power-kites and pilot-lifters, key concepts long advocated on the AWES Forum. In his last two newsletters, Lynn has brilliantly reviewed the logic driving the quest for these new kites, consistent with a broad trend in AWE away from expensive vulnerable poorly-scalable high-performance fly-by-wire kiteplanes, toward larger simpler cheaper soft-kites with passive flight stability.

      The common insights spring from the same roots in the kite-show world and kite sports, and key AWE figures like Dave Culp, the original guru of giant single-skin ship-kites. There must also be some recent cross-fertilization, since Lynn uses many of the same conceptual phrasings we do (its unknown how actively Lynn follows the Forum, or if common ideas simply percolate up to him via his staff and many shared connections). Expect to soon see hybrid passive-control AWES of SS power-kites under SS pilot-lifters (KiteLab rigged) as perhaps the ultimate lowest-LCOE KIS AWES basis. Dave Gomberg (Gomberg Kites) and Ron Welty (Wind World Kites) are seeking to order the new PL kites in wholesale quantity, as the Chinese manufacturing partner makes them available.

      There are many interesting details to the SS kite topic. PL notes a mystery as to how the leading edge nose of power soft-kites resists luffing so well. Its possible this effect is thermodynamic; that pressure heating of the bulk air-mass under the wing creates extra inflation pressure behind the nose unaccounted for in a purely Newtonian ballistic-kinetic transfer.

      Enjoy the "best-of-the-best" writing about modern kite engineering by the acknowledged master-

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