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100th Anniversary of the 1919 Air Race

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100th Anniversary of the 1919 Air Race

Old 12th Jan 2016, 03:59
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100th Anniversary of the 1919 Air Race

I've been talking to famous adventurer and aviator, Lang Kidby in relation to an idea of mine regarding commemorating the 1919 race. I could even be talked into coming up with sponsorship or prize money towards this.

My initial suggestion was that we open it up for Australian pilots and others of the British Empire - as it was in 1919.

To bring it up to date we could limit it to electrically powered aircraft that can be charged each night by any way possible.

After discussing with Lang, we realised there will have to be substantial improvements in batteries and technology in the next 3 years to make that possible.

Does anyone have any other suggestions on how we can have a worthwhile commemoration of that 100th Anniversary?
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Old 12th Jan 2016, 04:35
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The most obvious would be to get Lang to fly the replica over the route again.

Failing that another race similar to the several 1934 1954 1969 etc ones. But with one difference NO GPS, map and compass only.

The idea of battery power is great but even with the new Tesla type batteries is probably not possible within the short time ie 3 years.

If you do go down the Air Race route you can count me in as a starter, having done this route twice.
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Old 12th Jan 2016, 04:49
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Will it be held in Australia? or a race from England to Oz? i cant imagine many electric aircraft being capable of that feat within 3 years,

But a local Around Oz might work, obviously experimental aircraft only?
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Old 12th Jan 2016, 06:25
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A genuinely great idea, Dick. Encouraging the development and participation of electric aircraft with the carrying capacity, endurance and robustness to cover that route would be a very real contribution to technological advancement.

My selfish request is that consideration also be given to participation by pilots of old, oil burning technology in - e.g. a mini race from e.g. Darwin to Melbourne along the same route being flown by the electric aircraft. Maybe the entry requirement for that 'mini race' could be e.g. payment of a sponsorship of at least a specified amount to one of the electric aircraft teams, or into a pool from which the prize money for the winner/place getters of the electric aircraft racers would be paid?
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Old 12th Jan 2016, 07:13
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My plan was England to Australia in less than 30 days . Just like the original

I reckon it could be possible with electric power in a year or two- hope so.

Need to average about 350 mn per day.
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Old 12th Jan 2016, 07:50
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hmmm, rubbing chin thinking about my savvy, 110Ltrs = 70Kg, remove the 912, save a few Kg there replacing it with a 80 to 100 hp electric motor... 70kg of batteries... add a few Kg for titanium lining the battery mountings areas in the wings...
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Old 12th Jan 2016, 07:59
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Gee, that bears some serious thought, Dick.
I had hoped that Lang Kidby could bring the Vimy replica down for the occasion - but a race for electric aircraft - over that route?
That's a whole new ball-game. Bring it on!

It might be remembered, though, that one third of the competitors suffered fatal crashes largely because of technology limitations.
An electric aircraft durability trial in 2019 would be a worthy parallel (hopefully avoiding incidents).

Now, I wonder if the AWM would lend me McIntosh & Parer's DH9 for the event?
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Old 12th Jan 2016, 08:36
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I think Steve Fosset donated the Vimy to the Smithsonian.
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Old 12th Jan 2016, 08:50
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Even if some of the cutting edge electric designs won't make the distance, the technology and infrastructure available to render assistance if something goes wrong is very different than in 1919. But that's all just part of the risk management processes that are now a normal part of participating in these kinds of adventures.

It's a great idea, Dick.
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Old 12th Jan 2016, 08:58
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Wow Dick what a great idea,

In the spirit of the original, although I suspect at substantial cost.

Steve.
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Old 12th Jan 2016, 09:14
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Does anyone have any other suggestions on how we can have a worthwhile commemoration of that 100th Anniversary? - DS

Yes, if I may drop in - don't forget to ask Tracey Curtis-Taylor to take part.

Jack
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Old 12th Jan 2016, 10:46
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If you can't do electric, how about unmanned?
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Old 12th Jan 2016, 10:57
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"If you can't do electric, how about unmanned?"

Some of the radio controlled aeromodellers manage to do both. And their aircraft scale is rapidly approaching 1 to 1.
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Old 12th Jan 2016, 22:22
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Awesome idea!!!!!

I think it would be great for the challenge to be pushing the boundaries of technology and not just an adventure using existing technology.

I think that with some concerted effort the electric idea is not too far from possible, after all an electric aircraft has broke 200MPH back in 2012. Home | Flight of the Century There is a risk that within the next 3 years the technology may develop to the point that completing the challenge is trivial...

One real challenge for a competitor will be to get the balance between bleeding edge and tried and true right. Do you go bleeding edge and suffer from lack of development or do you go tried and true and get beaten by someone who goes more bleeding edge.

The original Air race had a restriction that the aircraft had to be built within the British Empire and was in part to encourage the development of new aircraft technologies. It would be great if the new competition had the similar aims to develop Australian aircraft technology. How would you define Australian made in the modern era of global supply chains would need some careful thought.

Awesome Idea! My head is spinning with thoughts about how to win this...
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Old 13th Jan 2016, 01:23
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The original Air race had a restriction that the aircraft had to be built within the British Empire and was in part to encourage the development of new aircraft technologies. It would be great if the new competition had the similar aims to develop Australian aircraft technology. How would you define Australian made in the modern era of global supply chains would need some careful thought.
This would severely limit the number of potential entrants.
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Old 13th Jan 2016, 02:00
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UK to Oz 100 years

Great idea for a commemoration...AND to advance the techo for light flight.

There already exists a German electric motor glider with solar panels on the wings and a range in excess of 1000 kms...so its quite feasable.

There is also a US electric LSA... the name escapes me..but sleek and fast?
The Chinese Yuneeq... which now may be much improved.. was a circuit trainer only..slow and not much range a few years ago.
An hour and a half of circuit training... and a re-charge at $7.oo !!
The realty would be greater, but how much more affordable would flying be !

A good example would be the Darwin -Adelaide Solar Challenge.
Just look at the amazing developments and changes over the years that have occurred there to speed up the journey.

Im sure there would be many student groups from around the world with the skills and techo-knowhow to put up a machine to give their country some qudos. All good stuff.

So while all you folk have been paddling down the "Roo Route", (been there done that), I'll meet y'all up in Darwin having crossed Oz with a bag of mail to commemorate the First Aerial Crossing of Australia from Pt Cook to Darwin in 1919. Not sure I can afford an electric biplane tho.

Now where do I get a BE 2 replica from... NZed ?
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Old 13th Jan 2016, 02:58
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Dick may be onto a great idea that is possible?

According to Tesla Motors/SpaceX CEO Elon Musk, once batteries are capable of producing 400 Watt-hours per kilogram, with a Power-to-weight ratio of between 0.7-0.8, then an electrical transcontinental aircraft becomes “compelling”.
This could be a possible starter with present technology - combination glider and electric power?



Or an electric Cri-cri??

The SkySpark is a joint project of engineering company DigiSky and Polytechnic University of Turin. The two-seat Pioneer Alpi 300 has a 75 kW (101 hp) brushless electric motor powered by lithium polymer batteries. The aircraft achieved a world record of 250 km/h (155 mph) for a human-carrying electric aircraft on 12 June 2009.

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Old 13th Jan 2016, 03:02
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electric long EZ
(shame about the battery failure)
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Old 13th Jan 2016, 04:37
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not to mention the hybrid version of this in the works..

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Old 13th Jan 2016, 04:53
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Dick,

Make it a global challenge. Three years notice and I'm very sure that many people will answer the call.
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