Thread: Discussion I can't see it!
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Old Jul 15, 2011, 11:26 AM
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United States, CA, Diamond Springs
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Bill and I conducted some experiments with Super Supra. We have two alternatives, first being failsafe which is turn off the transmitter and the plane deploys landing flaps some down elevator and some rudder to put it into a large descending circle. The second method is to pull up elevator and loop it until re-acquiring visual.

Both work but there are possible problems in deploying failsafe too late with the glider at a high rate of speed. We havent had the guts to try it at high speed. Failsafe works at low speed though. For the second "Loop" method it would be necessary to gradually pull back on elevator in case the glider is in a dive and at high speed. Simply yanking on elevator would likely blow it up in that situation. That is probably how the Autonomous team lost their auto pilot SBXC a couple years back at Montague.

To test the loop method we put Super Supra in a dive, pulled up elevator all the way and she entered a series of loops that over time became a combination of big stalls and loops but she never entered a death spiral. We tested this several times for a couple minutes each test so I'm inclined to use the looping method. The big problem is having the discipline to realize you are in trouble and pull up elevator soon enough. That is surprisingly hard to do and there seems to be a natural tendency to keep searching and wait too long before going for the loop recovery.

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