Pipistrel Panthera videos

I found some interesting videos from Youtube describing the new Pipistrel Panthera four seat aircraft that has incredible performance and economy compared to competition in the similar class:

John McGinnis’ Synergy Aircraft got funded in Kickstarter

Roughly 4 hours ago, John McGinnis succeeded to raise the goal for funding his Synergy aircraft on Kickstarter. The funding exceeded the goal by couple of tens of thousands. I think this is a remarkable achievement and it proves that also aircraft projects can be crowd-sourced. Congratulations to John and good luck with his project. Now it is his turn to finish the plane and get it on the air. This is now on critical path since as the plane is funded, the reputation of crowd-funding aircraft projects in the future will have this as a case example, so he better succeed. Looking forward to seeing Synergy to fly to Oshkosh! Please make it happen!

North Atlantic Adventure Photo Gallery

Here is a photo gallery of our 2009 North Atlantic Adventure.

Here is a photo gallery of our 2009 North Atlantic Adventure. IMG_1321 North Atlantic Adventure Gallery at Flickr

John McGinnis has Synergy Aircraft as Kickstarter project

I met John McGinnis in Oshkosh and he is a humble homebuilder guy with a dream and passion bigger and stronger than most of the aircraft fellas and he has unorthodox design that will be one of the coolest looking homebuilt aircraft when finished & successfully in the air. It is a kind of like flying wing but elevons placed in a box tail in the wing tips –  a configuration which is supposed to reduce drag. This is combined with very aerodynamic pod shape fuselage and laminar flow airfoil wings. And on top of that the plane will run on Deltahawk diesel engine and will work in places where AVGAS is no longer available and can just fill the tanks with JET-A, even in places like Kuujjuaq or Pangnirtung if he chooses to go for that kind of adventure. You can help this project getting this bird to the air by backing John’s Kickstarter project:


Thai Beef with garlic, oyster sauce, chili and bamboo shoots

Step 1. Prepare Marinade

Mix the followings in a bowl:
– 8 spoons of oyster sauce
– 4 teaspoons of corn flour
– 3 teaspoons of black pepper

Mix these throughly. If your oyster sauce is thin, then add more corn flour.
The one I use is very thick and not that more than this thickening agent is necessary.

Step 2. Beef Into Marinade + Precook

– Cut beef into small thin slices
– Mix marinade and beef and let the beef to soak the marinade for 15-20 minutes

After this, pre-cook the beef in microwave owen so that the slices are roughly “medium”.

Step 3. Oil
Mix the followings in a small cup:
– 8 spoons of sunflower oil
– 5 teaspoons of fresh crushed garlic
– 3 x small red chili cut into pieces, without the seeds (remove seeds). I used Rawit Chili which worked very well. 3 small red rawit chilis will make the food about medium hot. If you want very hot, add 2 more. Be careful because if your chilis are stronger than the ones I used, you will end up with way too hot food which no longer is tasty but just hot.

Cook the oil mix in the wok pan for a little while until the garlic has changed color from a light color to a slightly darker color. When this happens, pour the beef mix into the pan.
Continue cooking in the pan. Make sure you don’t burn the food.

Step 4. Vegetables
Prepare the followings in microwave owen:
– 500 g fresh champignons (common mushrooms). You can substitute with tin can of sliced mushrooms if you can’t obtain the fresh ones.
– 2 x 225..250g tin cans of bamboo shoots. Pour the water out before using. At least in Finland this is the only way the bamboo shoots are available. Fresh bamboo shoots may be better if you can obtain them.
– Add some basil (roughly same amount you would add oregano to a pizza)
– Add some soy sauce on top of the vegetables. This gives them moisture for microwave owen to operate properly and adds taste.
– Add up to 1 deciliter of water. If you add more, you will have too wet end result.

Mix these and cook in microwave owen until they have softened. Do not overcook.

Step 5. Mix vegetables to the beef to the pan

Mix the pre-cooked vegetables with the beef. Cook with moderate power. Be sure to not burn the food.

Step 6. Serve with either rice or noodles. 

Idea: Helicopter with the blades extendeding from the outer edge of a lens shaped lifting body

I was today walking with a dog and it occurred to me that with a fly by wire system a helicopter which would have blades outside of a circular lifting body and that would have a pusher prop (cruise prop) on top of the said flat lifting body in a pivoting pylon with thrust vectoring, could possibly fly stable and avoid the not that good things of a helicopter and be more efficient VTOL craft than a conventional helicopter. The bearing on the outer ring would possibly though be some sort of a challenge. On a big one, the outer ring could be not connected to the inner ring at all, but it could actually use maglev technique to levitate in a hole without physical contact with the bearing. This could come with too heavy weight penalties, so not sure if it would be feasible. So this is just a out of the box thinking idea because I have always felt that there is something wrong with helicopters, I have never really liked how they look like and how they function, there must be a better way to do that.

Cyclic system could be hidden inside the center section so that it would not cause drag like on a helicopter where there are lots of mechanical parts directly in the airflow causing drag. In cruise the plane would be a gyrocopter rather than a helicopter because it would have positive angle of attack unlike helicopter which cruises at negative angle of attack (and only blades have positive angle of attack).

I would like to try this as RC-model, but the challenge would be to fabricate such a large and yet lightweight bearing that would be size of the craft itself. The outer shell with the bearing would have a gear tooth that would be driven with a pinion gear that would be connected to the engine. This would also function as gear reduction drive. In addition to the ring drive to takeoff and landing, there would need to be a generator for driving the pylon mounted thrust vectoring prop that would be run with an electric motor.

The shape of the lifting body would be a suboptimal airfoil because it would need to be symmetrical and have both sharp leading edge and trailing edge but. This kind of craft would be naturally unstable but it could be artificially stabilized with software.

Cross sections in Rhino from a loft

I wrote a long time ago about how to do cross sections in Rhino. I mentioned that it needs to be Object intersection. If you do Boolean Intersection, this technique is not going to work. I found that the earlier instruction might have been a bit confusing because there are multiple ways to do intersections in Rhino.

The original article is here: http://designaplane.blogspot.com/2008/10/irhino-learnings-of-today.htmlPlease read it.

The function what you have to use is Intersect (to do Object Intersection).
If you type it to the command area, type Intersect, not Intersection or Booleanintersection.
You know that you have chosen wrong intersection method if you have to select two set of objects. Multiselect everything (your cutters and the lofted surface) at the same time and do Intersect. It works.