Community > Forum > Technology & Science > Global Flyer ... did Fossett make it?

Global Flyer ... did Fossett make it?

Posted by: Dr_Keith_H - Thu Mar 03, 2005 8:47 am
Post new topic Reply to topic
 [ 50 posts ] 
Go to page Previous  1, 2, 3, 4  Next
Global Flyer ... did Fossett make it? 
Author Message
Space Walker
Space Walker
avatar
Joined: Sun Sep 28, 2003 9:58 pm
Posts: 111
Post    Posted on: Fri Mar 04, 2005 8:50 pm
No, you cannot just change the engines - the center of gravity is altered, the fittings are different, the on-board equipment needs to be different; not that the change would do any good either. Afterburning military surplus turbojets are not in a large supply anywhere, so you'd have to carry them along; and the engine on the GF is just a regular jet engine, the kind you'd find on a Cessna Citation, a plane that will never do a non-stop round the world trip. The real magic of the Global Flyer was the extremely low weight construction - and in the process, so fragile that it could never, EVER carry a piggyback cargo such as SSO.

And it's spelled White Knight, for crying out loud.


Back to top
Profile
Moderator
Moderator
avatar
Joined: Thu Jun 03, 2004 11:23 am
Posts: 3745
Location: Hamburg, Germany
Post    Posted on: Sat Mar 05, 2005 8:40 am
Hello, Vendigo,

of course I didn't speak of the real existing GlobalFlyer itself and not of the real existing White Knight itself.

I have been speaking of a craft developed out of these both.

It's clear to me that achange of the engines cannot be done concerning the both real existing crafts. And supposedly noone has treid for a craft with changability or switchability of engines yet.

But it might be interesting to do so under some economical, market-, organizational or coordinative conditions or circumstances.

If I'm right and nobody has treid to develop changeabiility yet then this does mean only that it is impossible to change engines of crafts constructed based on current concepts and methods - of course that is so, But searching for concepts, methods etc. that allow for changeability may be successful. But currently there are no incentives to do so - that may change.



In between I could imagine another possible use for GlobalFlyer-like crafts regarding space. Such an airplane could be interesting for nonstop-flights around Titan or Venus - unmanned versions first, that's clear. This would be interesting because of hight velocity compared to balloons, ability to fly in the titanian atmosphere at altitudes below 20 km where there is clear sight and the extremely reduced requirement of carrying its propellant from Earth to Titan or Venus.



Dipl.-Volkswirt (bdvb9 Augustin (Political Economist)


Back to top
Profile
Space Walker
Space Walker
avatar
Joined: Sun Sep 28, 2003 9:58 pm
Posts: 111
Post    Posted on: Sat Mar 05, 2005 9:55 pm
Ekkehard Augustin wrote:
Hello, Vendigo,

of course I didn't speak of the real existing GlobalFlyer itself and not of the real existing White Knight itself.

I have been speaking of a craft developed out of these both.

What's the entire blank line for? Dramatic drumroll? GF and WK have shared all the genes they ever will. There's not going to be a "hybrid" of the two.
Quote:
It's clear to me that achange of the engines cannot be done concerning the both real existing crafts. And supposedly noone has treid for a craft with changability or switchability of engines yet.

And never will, for that matter
Quote:
But it might be interesting to do so under some economical, market-, organizational or coordinative conditions or circumstances.

In which galaxy?
Quote:
If I'm right and nobody has treid to develop changeabiility yet then this does mean only that it is impossible to change engines of crafts constructed based on current concepts and methods - of course that is so, But searching for concepts, methods etc. that allow for changeability may be successful. But currently there are no incentives to do so - that may change.

How about a search for some common sense?

Quote:
In between I could imagine another possible use for GlobalFlyer-like crafts regarding space. Such an airplane could be interesting for nonstop-flights around Titan or Venus - unmanned versions first, that's clear. This would be interesting because of hight velocity compared to balloons, ability to fly in the titanian atmosphere at altitudes below 20 km where there is clear sight and the extremely reduced requirement of carrying its propellant from Earth to Titan or Venus.


Wow, light weight space vehicles, I'm sure that NO-ONE ever thought it before.


Quote:
Dipl.-Volkswirt (bdvb9 Augustin (Political Economist)

Too bad it isn't an engineering degree of any sort.


Back to top
Profile
Moderator
Moderator
avatar
Joined: Thu Jun 03, 2004 11:23 am
Posts: 3745
Location: Hamburg, Germany
Post    Posted on: Sun Mar 06, 2005 5:40 pm
There is no engineering degree required - I am just saying that a way to get changeability or switchability might be found if that way would be searched for. Currently this seems to provide no advantages - but this may change in the future. Noone can know that now.

When the first homecomputers and PCs were offered at the markets they had no harddisks but a floppy disk drive only. They were not taken in serious and some people used to smile when I thought theoretically about something like harddisks.

Less than ten years later PCs really had that harddisks which proved my idea to be reasonable. Some years later I was thinking about changable harddisks but the people to which I told of it asked for purpose and so on and they weren't interested - but today it's normal practice to have changeable harddisks by external USB-HDDs. There is a step before these external harddisks - mulitiple harddisks, multiple partitions at one harddisks with different operation system per partition often.

My thought of changable or switchable engines are an analog of changable or switchable harddisks.

The engine of SSO seems to changeable - Rutan removed the engine used in May of 2004 replaced it by a stronger engine for the June flight and at the two winning flights he used another stronger engine yet.

The proposal to use such airplanes at Titan or Venus didnÄt have anything to do with lightweightness - lightweightness is only of meaning during launch or landing. The propsal simply had to do with the reduced amount of propellant required - at Titan or Venus there are no chances to refuel an airplane. And a probe like Mars Express would be a good substitute because it has to orbit outside the atmosphere - and cannot photograph the surface that easy. Balloons are slow - so GlobalFlyer-like airplanes for Titan or Venus might be worth to think of.



Dipl.-Volkswirt (bdvb) Augustin (Political Economist)


Back to top
Profile
Spaceflight Participant
Spaceflight Participant
User avatar
Joined: Tue Nov 16, 2004 11:43 pm
Posts: 97
Location: Canada
Post    Posted on: Sun Mar 06, 2005 6:16 pm
Ekkehard,
I'm pretty sure I understand what you're saying. Unfortunately, what you seem to be missing is that the major reasons that globalflyer was so efficient on fuel was its light weight design and its unique use of lift in its wings (using earth's atmosphere - something that would likely have to be re-engineered for any other atmosphere that a similar plane would be flown in). The engine itself, while better than the rather simple one on SSO, had little better performance stats than other engines on the market presently (as far as I could tell). Essentially what Rutan did was make a good glider that could carry the extra weight of the engine and fuel.


Back to top
Profile
Moderator
Moderator
avatar
Joined: Thu Jun 03, 2004 11:23 am
Posts: 3745
Location: Hamburg, Germany
Post    Posted on: Sun Mar 06, 2005 6:27 pm
Allright - than it looks quite different to me than before. ... but I may change the question to changeability of wings perhaps. But I agree that I have problems with that idea.

Would it be possible in principle to develop wings that can be reshaped or reformed from those of GlobalFlyer to those of WK?

That the titanian atmosphere or the venusian one would require redesign is clear to me - the whole topic and my thinking about it and the question for any use etc. for space flight simply moved the fact into my mind that I never read of any thoughts about airflight at other planets. The reason will be that the Mars is in focus and the martian atmosphere seems to be much to thin for airflight - but the titanian and venusian atmospheres are not to thin. So it seems to be interesting and may provide a new way to research these planets.



Than You Very Much for your explanation regarding the GlobalFlyer.



Dipl.-Volkswirt (bdvb) Augustin (Political Economist)


Back to top
Profile
Moon Mission Member
Moon Mission Member
User avatar
Joined: Mon Nov 01, 2004 6:15 pm
Posts: 1233
Location: London, England
Post    Posted on: Sun Mar 06, 2005 7:19 pm
Ekkehard Augustin wrote:
The reason will be that the Mars is in focus and the martian atmosphere seems to be much to thin for airflight - but the titanian and venusian atmospheres are not to thin. So it seems to be interesting and may provide a new way to research these planets.


Ekkehard NASA is researching aircraft to fly in the Mars atmospher as seen in the links below.

http://www.machinedesign.com/ASP/viewSe ... ite=MDSite

http://www.aviationnow.com/avnow/news/c ... R11174.xml

This shows that it is possible to keep an aircraft up in the thin Martian atmosphere and since some of the designs use a prop it also means that a wind turbine should work on Mars.

Andy

_________________
A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.


Back to top
Profile WWW
Space Walker
Space Walker
avatar
Joined: Sun Sep 28, 2003 9:58 pm
Posts: 111
Post    Posted on: Sun Mar 06, 2005 7:25 pm
Ekkehard Augustin wrote:
There is no engineering degree required - I am just saying that a way to get changeability or switchability might be found if that way would be searched for. Currently this seems to provide no advantages - but this may change in the future. Noone can know that now.


Advantages beyond the disadvantages? doubtful.

Quote:
When the first homecomputers and PCs were offered at the markets they had no harddisks but a floppy disk drive only. They were not taken in serious and some people used to smile when I thought theoretically about something like harddisks.

...

My thought of changable or switchable engines are an analog of changable or switchable harddisks.

A hard drive: Few hundred grams of mainly static, practically maintenance-free hardware that fits a pocket fastened with four little screws and consuming few amps of electricity. Unit cost typically between 50-250 €.

A jet engine: Few hundred kilograms of maintenance intensive equipment manageable by a hoist, producing thrust measurable in kilonewtons and consuming several hundred kilograms of fuel per hour. Unit cost between 5-50 million

See the difference?

For a more permanent change of engine, yes, it is possible, most passenger jets can be fitted with the engine of choice with appropriate pylons, but it's not a "quick-change" project and not done on a whim.
Quote:
The engine of SSO seems to changeable - Rutan removed the engine used in May of 2004 replaced it by a stronger engine for the June flight and at the two winning flights he used another stronger engine yet.

No, the fuel grain was changeable, not the engine. The grain is essentially a carbon fibre tube with ceramic lining and rubber filling, and has nothing to do with a jet engine. And no, there is no way the used technology could be applied to a jet engine.
Quote:
The proposal to use such airplanes at Titan or Venus didnÄt have anything to do with lightweightness - lightweightness is only of meaning during launch or landing. The propsal simply had to do with the reduced amount of propellant required - at Titan or Venus there are no chances to refuel an airplane. And a probe like Mars Express would be a good substitute because it has to orbit outside the atmosphere - and cannot photograph the surface that easy. Balloons are slow - so GlobalFlyer-like airplanes for Titan or Venus might be worth to think of.

Global Flyer was a motor glider with enormous fuel/weight ratio. The plane was purpose-built for round the globe flight; an extraterrestial plane needs to tackle with a whole set of other problems.


Back to top
Profile
Spaceflight Participant
Spaceflight Participant
User avatar
Joined: Tue Nov 16, 2004 11:43 pm
Posts: 97
Location: Canada
Post    Posted on: Mon Mar 07, 2005 12:40 am
Vendi,

Here's the word of the day: Analogy.

The tricky part with analogies is thinking long enough about the two examples to see the connection. In Ekkehard's case, the connection has relatively little to do with specific mass, cost, or even complexity. By simply attempting to show superiority by mentioning obvious differences and yet missing out on the whole point of what was said does not exactly help you out here.

If you're going to try and pick at an English typo from an ESL German-speaking economist who has repeatedly spelled White Knight correctly before, then you probably should learn how to use some ways of using language as well.

Ekkehard is saying that thinking outside of the box is often viewed as silly at the time. I think we can all attest to the fact that he is always churning out ideas, usually very much 'out of the box'. Based on this, I can readily believe that he may have suggested something such as fixed storage in an early computer.

Think back to any of the 'greats' in the history of engineering and science, and you're more likely than not to find individuals who proposed ideas similarly 'out of the box'. These ideas were usually rejected by mainstream contemporaries who served largely to hinder the progress. There definitely is a benefit to 'knowing the rules' - it is essential to build off what is already known and understood. Brain-storming and silly-idea-producing is also likewise healthy to have, and necessary for many significant leaps forward. The problem, however, is that the two groups of people that favour one of the two approaches are rarely any good at talking to each other.


Back to top
Profile
Moderator
Moderator
avatar
Joined: Thu Jun 03, 2004 11:23 am
Posts: 3745
Location: Hamburg, Germany
Post    Posted on: Mon Mar 07, 2005 8:21 am
Hello, slycker,

that is the point or better are the points . ...



Hello, Vendigo,

you say "Advantages beyond disadvantages? doubtful." as answer to an issue of mine which is time-related - I said "Currently ... future". The issue has economic contents - I was supposing that there are no economic advantages currently but they may be some in the future. In this case it might be economical interesting in the future to search for changeability or switchability of engines. The arguments slycker posted are the ones that are changing my mind because according to him the engines are not that relevant for GlobalFlyer but the wings.



Hello, Andy Hill,

I knew of those martian flyers. The informations available to me are doubting if they will provide any net-use - they are supposed to be merely experimental. There is a post or thread of mine somwhere in this section about it.

You are right - it's a point for wind turbines too. Thanks for this link or connection or relation to the thread about electricity generation at Mars.



Dipl.-Volkswirt (bdvb) Augustin (Political Economist)


Back to top
Profile
Space Walker
Space Walker
avatar
Joined: Sun Sep 28, 2003 9:58 pm
Posts: 111
Post    Posted on: Mon Mar 07, 2005 9:12 am
Here's the take on the tangent to hard drives:

In 1980, hard drives were existing, tried hardware, and the question was whether PC would benefit from the enlarged capacity, not if it was doable.

A plane would suffer from being designed for two radically different engines. Such a compromise invariably gets the worst of the both worlds. The technical and logistics problem pointed out over and over and over again would defeat any objective of site independence or lowered operating costs.


Back to top
Profile
Moderator
Moderator
avatar
Joined: Thu Jun 03, 2004 11:23 am
Posts: 3745
Location: Hamburg, Germany
Post    Posted on: Mon Mar 07, 2005 9:23 am
Vendigo,

the first time I was faced to a home computer as it has been called that time here in Germany - that first time was 1978/1979 at school during an Informatics workshop. That home computer really didn't have a harddisk - it only had a RAM, a ROM and floppy disk drive.

May be that this has been different in the US but note that I am a German and was at school here in Germany - it takes between one and three years at least until a technological or technical progress achieved in the US reaches Germany.

Your second issue will be right and correct currently - today. But research might result in a change years, a decade or several decades in the future - might but needn't: there is a chance because the future is undetermined.

But please note - slyckers post moved my mind away from the engines - I am no longer focussed on them.



Dipl.-Volkswirt (bdvb) Augustin (Political Economist)


Back to top
Profile
Moon Mission Member
Moon Mission Member
avatar
Joined: Tue Feb 10, 2004 2:56 am
Posts: 1104
Location: Georgia Tech, Atlanta, GA
Post    Posted on: Mon Mar 07, 2005 1:19 pm
Ekkehard: here's what campbelp2002 is trying to say.

An aircraft (or even automobile) engine is an incredibly complex piece of equipment, that is essentially integrated with the vehicle in which it resides. You can't just push a button and have it pop out, like the clip for an automatic pistol. There are hundreds -- if not thousands -- of wires, hydraulics systems, computer systems, fuel lines, and miscellaneous other stuff that connects each engine to the airplane, and each engine to each other.

Here's a few examples. And keep in mind, these are older, far simpler engines than the kinds that are currently being produced. This might be a better example.

Now, even assuming that you developed a system whereby engines would be interchangeable easily and rapidly, nobody would buy it. Why not? Because the system makes the vehicle too unsafe: how do you know that the engine won't decide to slide out of its nacelle during a flight at 30,000 feet? Or, even worse, right after take-off? Besides that, engines are currently designed for maximum fuel and power efficiency. Any sort of quick-interchange system would reduce that efficiency and add cost to the engine, thus hurting the airlines economically in two ways.

Aircraft engines (like automobile engines) simply don't need to be replaced often enough to make a quick-interchange system economically viable. Such a quick-interchange system is not viable from either an engineering or an economic standpoint, because it unnecessarily increases the complexity and probability of failure of both the engine and the entire aircraft, and it does not reduce operating costs in any way; rather, it would greatly increase them.

_________________
American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics
Daniel Guggenheim School of Aerospace Engineering

In Memoriam...
Apollo I - Soyuz I - Soyuz XI - STS-51L - STS-107


Back to top
Profile
Moderator
Moderator
avatar
Joined: Thu Jun 03, 2004 11:23 am
Posts: 3745
Location: Hamburg, Germany
Post    Posted on: Mon Mar 07, 2005 1:30 pm
Yes - you are arguing by Economics. Economics are the point I suppose to be the reason why currently nobody is interested to search if changeability or switchability of engines could be developed.

But the topic "changeability and switchability of airplane engines" isn't in my focus any longer since slycker posted his answer to me.



Dipl.-Volkswirt (bdvb) Augustin (Political Economist)


Back to top
Profile
Space Walker
Space Walker
avatar
Joined: Sun Sep 28, 2003 9:58 pm
Posts: 111
Post    Posted on: Mon Mar 07, 2005 7:04 pm
Ah, I took the PC as IBM PC. Here's a bit of irony: the kind of home computer you described never had wide success with the hard drive, while the PC did, practically from the beginning. The PC was not a home computer, it was designed a professional computer. Only in the early nineties, when PC gained multimedia capabilities, it started to phase out the traditional home computers; low-end Amigas and ST's, for which hard drives were more of a rarity.


Back to top
Profile
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 50 posts ] 
 

Who is online 

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 14 guests


© 2014 The International Space Fellowship, developed by Gabitasoft Interactive. All Rights Reserved.  Privacy Policy | Terms of Use