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07 Dec 2019, 09:38 [ UTC - 5; DST ]


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 Post subject: Perlan II Sailplane
PostPosted: 28 Aug 2018, 20:47 
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Not sure how many of you might be aware but the Perlan Project has been having a pretty successful season in southern Argentina. The day before yesterday they bumped the World Altitude Record up to ~61,000 feet. The previous record was ~52,000 ft which they set last September. Today they flew to ~65,000 feet indicated via their real time tracking page. Not sure what the official GPS altitude will be but they almost certainly bumped up their record claim. And the season isn't over yet!

This is a really exciting project for us soaring pilots. The glider is pressurized and designed to operate up to 90,000 ft. They have observed stratospheric waves at those heights and they believe that the glider has the performance to be able to climb there.

www.perlanproject.org


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 Post subject: Re: Perlan II Sailplane
PostPosted: 28 Aug 2018, 21:34 
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I’m not a soaring pilot, but that is just super cool.


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 Post subject: Re: Perlan II Sailplane
PostPosted: 28 Aug 2018, 21:44 
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Really impressive. And it's perhaps somewhere up there that we will also see the potential capabilities of battery powered flight for long range. Once you're up there, it wouldn't need much power to go pretty fast and far. Doesn't GS increase with about 2kts per 1000ft? At 70000ft, you'd have gained an extra 140kts on the same power...

But perhaps even more interestingly - the heavily modified Grob 520 they use to tow the Perlan, regularly tows the thing up to 48000ft on a Garret -14 engine! Just goes to show us that if you have enough wing and good power-to-weight, you can really get up there even in a TP.


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 Post subject: Re: Perlan II Sailplane
PostPosted: 28 Aug 2018, 23:54 
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Nice. I’ve done a few glider tows where I would have killed to have that vertical stab.


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 Post subject: Re: Perlan II Sailplane
PostPosted: 29 Aug 2018, 10:15 
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Username Protected wrote:
Doesn't GS increase with about 2kts per 1000ft? At 70000ft, you'd have gained an extra 140kts on the same power...


That's wild. From the website: "Its true flight speed at 90,000 will be 350 knots"


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 Post subject: Re: Perlan II Sailplane
PostPosted: 29 Aug 2018, 15:02 
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That’s really cool...hope they succeed!

In the U-2 at 70,000’ we would fly at Mach .700 to .715. That was about 102 KIAS, or 420 to 425 kts True. There is not much room between max Mach and stall speed when you get above 70k.


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 Post subject: Re: Perlan II Sailplane
PostPosted: 29 Aug 2018, 15:19 
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Username Protected wrote:
That’s really cool...hope they succeed!

In the U-2 at 70,000’ we would fly at Mach .700 to .715. That was about 102 KIAS, or 420 to 425 kts True. There is not much room between max Mach and stall speed when you get above 70k.


Need more U-2 stories on BeechTalk! :popcorn:


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 Post subject: Re: Perlan II Sailplane
PostPosted: 30 Aug 2018, 17:48 
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Username Protected wrote:
Really impressive. And it's perhaps somewhere up there that we will also see the potential capabilities of battery powered flight for long range. Once you're up there, it wouldn't need much power to go pretty fast and far. Doesn't GS increase with about 2kts per 1000ft? At 70000ft, you'd have gained an extra 140kts on the same power...

But perhaps even more interestingly - the heavily modified Grob 520 they use to tow the Perlan, regularly tows the thing up to 48000ft on a Garret -14 engine! Just goes to show us that if you have enough wing and good power-to-weight, you can really get up there even in a TP.


It has a 100+ ft wingspan...I think it's actually registered as a motor glider.


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 Post subject: Re: Perlan II Sailplane
PostPosted: 02 Sep 2018, 22:40 
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They made it to 76000 feet and change today. Higher than the highest recorded U2 flight! In the course of a couple weeks the World Altitude Record has jumped 23000 feet. Absolutely amazing!


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 Post subject: Re: Perlan II Sailplane
PostPosted: 03 Sep 2018, 21:49 
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Wow!


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 Post subject: Re: Perlan II Sailplane
PostPosted: 03 Sep 2018, 21:58 
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Very cool!!!


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 Post subject: Re: Perlan II Sailplane
PostPosted: 03 Sep 2018, 22:05 
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They've put a lot of pictures and video and stuff on their Facebook Page.

Website: http://perlanproject.org/

Video from the tail cam on the 76000 ft flight:

https://www.facebook.com/PerlanProject/ ... 506192210/

Only thing I noticed really wrong with this article was that Morgan Sandercock is not the only copilot. The three record flights made this season have all been done with different back seaters. Morgan, Miguel Itermundi, and Tim Gardner.

https://www.cnn.com/travel/article/perl ... index.html


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 Post subject: Re: Perlan II Sailplane
PostPosted: 03 Sep 2018, 23:04 
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To get a full appreciation of soaring in mountain wave conditions and the rich history of this endeavor, I recommend that you obtain a copy of a book entitled “Exploring the Monster Mountain Lee Waves: the Aerial Elevator” by Robert F. Whelan.

Then look into what pilots like Sabrina Jackintell, Paul Bikle and Bob Harris accomplished flying their gliders in the wave. For the record....nobody...has flown a single seat glider higher than the 49,009 ft record set by Bob Harris back in 1986.

The subsequent records that have been set by others involved multi-place gliders with significant outside support, such as pressure suits loaned by NASA or large scale financial sponsorship, advantages that the wave flight pioneers did not have the benefit of.

While the Perlan Project is an amazing achievement in it’s own right, it merely proves that if you throw enough resources at a challenge, you can usually achieve it. When you compare Perlan to what individual glider pilots accomplished on their own in their own sailplanes with not much more than a dream and determination, you can then begin to appreciate what Bob Harris and his predecessors accomplished. That is something to be truly celebrated and admired.


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 Post subject: Re: Perlan II Sailplane
PostPosted: 03 Sep 2018, 23:27 
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Yep Exploring the Monster is a great read.

I think there needs to be a chapter or two added to it now :)


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 Post subject: Re: Perlan II Sailplane
PostPosted: 04 Sep 2018, 00:06 
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Here is a great podcast about the perlan project.

http://omegataupodcast.net/283-the-perlan-project/


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