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Super high altitude (100,000+ feet) glider

Old 09-14-2013, 07:38 AM
  #76  
Jfan
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Interesting story, thanks for sharing! Do you know if Mr. Hill's still alive?

You are correct about the battery issues, which is why originally I thought to use a combination of brushless motor plus rocket engine. Another option is to use solar power, like "Aleuli" Alex did on his solar powered flying wing, reaching a max altitude of 7100 mts / 23200+ feet, using small solar cells, plus a few lipo batts.



The plane will be self stabilized with a Storm OSD with inbuilt stabilization features. I've considered APM, but not sure it would provide more than what the Storm alraedy has, well I take that back, maybe I could use telemetry.

Thinking about designing the plane from scratch using my CAD program, keeping the model simple, but effective, following the design clues of some of the models JetflaneFlyer showed me above, and then go from there.

But hey, to be blunt, I don't have a clue what I'm getting into, which is the "fun" part. I've only been in this hobby for maybe 5 years. Only thing I know is this, the sky is still up there, and it has enough space to receive more rc planes anyday of the day.

Last edited by Jfan; 09-14-2013 at 07:47 AM. Reason: Grammar!
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Old 09-14-2013, 10:05 AM
  #77  
JetPlaneFlyer
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Solar/battery combo is the way to go, that's what all the extreme high altitude UAV's built by NASA and QinitiQ used. Using this type of technology the altitudes you have in mind are without doubt possible, it's already been done.

The downside is that it takes a huge budget and very specialist expertise. NASA and QinetiQ had budgets of many millions of $. Possibly it could be done a fair bit cheaper these days as the technology trickles down and becomes more affordable. I'm sure you would still be looking at, at the very least, hundreds of thousand of $ and a great deal of very specialist engineering to get toward the 70,000ft target you first mentioned.

It all depends where you set your bar. 30,000 ft might be do'able on less than ten thousand $ budget, but cost will rise exponentially to get higher.
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Old 09-14-2013, 08:38 PM
  #78  
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There's always "kickstarter", if it gets too expensive. But I believe it can be done relatively cheap if you rely on making your own stuff. Such as the plane.

The rest of the electronics are "cheap" (again, please keep things in context). A UHF rx/tx combo from Dragonlink is going for $260+ and with the proper antennas you can reach 80+ kms. I have a Cyclops Storm that I got for $135, then I also have Sony 420 FPV camera that I paid $16 w/free shipping, a Yaggi antenna you can get it for $30+ from ebay. Maybe the most expensive part may be the solar cells, but anyway you get the picture.

Horses and cows, you can even get an APM2.5 with radios, and a variety of add-ons for well below $350. But I would like to have more than one plane in case I lose one, so yes, I may have to have a decent budget, but not "hundreds of thousands of dollars", unless I am buying avionics from Boeing!

I have a friend who is an engineer, he builds trailers, the company where he works at bought an industrial 3D printing machine but they are barely using it at all. He told me I could use it for free, I will have to pay for the materials, but that won't be expensive for me. The machine can print in a variety of materials, including metals, plastic, aluminum etc. This is not a desktop $5k 3D printer btw. I only have to send him an STL model (easy), so the printer can accept the format and print away.
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Old 09-14-2013, 09:59 PM
  #79  
kyleservicetech
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Originally Posted by Jfan View Post
Interesting story, thanks for sharing! Do you know if Mr. Hill's still alive?

No
Mr Hill passed on in 2011 at the age of 85. His lists of records set alone would fill a book.

http://aerospaceindustrynews.webs.co...obiography.pdf
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Old 09-17-2013, 04:58 AM
  #80  
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No
Mr Hill passed on in 2011 at the age of 85. His lists of records set alone would fill a book.
That's sad. I've read some of his adventures in the rc world, very interesting stuff. He was an innovator for sure.
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Old 09-17-2013, 05:12 AM
  #81  
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Solar/battery combo is the way to go, that's what all the extreme high altitude UAV's built by NASA and QinitiQ used.
I've been re-reading this thread from the beginning, and I've come to the conclusion that I cannot use a rocket engine at all. That's fine. This would put me in the wrong side of the FAA policy, since my glider would be flown remotely and therefore it would fall in the category of a guided rocket. If I understand the policy right.

So, like you suggested Jetflane, if I start this project at all it will be solar&battery powered and just try to go as high as possible with this powerplant, see what it can do.


Anyways, anybody know what happened to the original poster? Has he abandoned the project or is he still working on it.
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Old 09-17-2013, 06:18 AM
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Originally Posted by Jfan View Post
I've been re-reading this thread from the beginning, and I've come to the conclusion that I cannot use a rocket engine at all. That's fine. This would put me in the wrong side of the FAA policy, since my glider would be flown remotely and therefore it would fall in the category of a guided rocket. If I understand the policy right.
Yeah
In this area at the Bong recreational site, in the past years they've had rocket launches with unlimited rockets. I've been there, watched them, some of those rockets went supersonic. These rockets were some 8-10 feet long, and heavy. You think RC is expensive??? Some of them cost hundreds of dollars per flight. Even got videos of some of them launching.

And, none of them got over 6000 feet high.
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Old 09-17-2013, 10:10 PM
  #83  
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Me thinks Homeland Security would have a problem with it. Especially if guided or ballistic.

Sounds like a great plan to take pictures of Dream Land Air Force base aka Area 51.
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