Archive | December, 2010

3km em primeira pessoa

8 Dec
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No words!

5 Dec

I don’t know if was Kermit or JFK who said: – It is not easy to be fast!

3 Dec

Hello you all! Here we are, back at Belo Horizonte with the world fastest airplane sitting in the workshop (maybe for new improvements). Today was a FANTASTIC day! Again we woke up at 05:00AM in order to try to take-off at sun-rise. Nobody had breakfast because we wanted to be ready as soon as possible so we could try to break the 3km record, the “crème de la crème” of the world records. At the airport gate we went through INFRAERO’s “Authority” when the guard said that we were only allowed to get in after 06:30AM (sunrise was at 06:01AM). After some discussion and a call to the local police, the guard opened the gate. But this time lost was enough to start a weak rain development close to the runway 26 threshold (remember that SDZY runway is almost 3km long and it isn’t unusual to have different weather conditions on each end).  Despite the rain we decided to take-off to get the advantage of high air-density and low turbulence. The airplane weight was near 299kg because we added a lead weight in the engine mount to move the CG forward and make Gúnar`s life easier while flying fast at low heights (the 3km record must be flown within 100m from the ground). After take-off from runway 08 Gúnar started the passes from 08 to 26. On this type of record we start the course faster than our level speed and our indicated airspeed in this case was 210kts! Wow, this airplane is really fast, and with its opened exhaust tubes, the sound becomes beautiful! At 26 threshold the IAS was about 180-185kts. The second pass, from 26 to 08, we realized how laminar the airflow was over this wing. With rain drops over it, even with an aggressive nose down attitude, Gúnar wasn’t able to reach more than 195kts and the pass was very slow.  However, Gúnar tried 6 passes (the measurement must be the average of 4 consecutive passes), intending for the fastest ones to compensate the slowest.

Back on the ground we pushed the airplane into our “hangar” and went back to the hotel to have a breakfast. After eating a little bit, Mr. Brian started to analyze the data and after a couple of minutes he showed me the results… 355km/h. A new world record, but… the maximum height above the ground allowed is 100m and we reached 104m… Oh, only 4 meters cost us the world record. But, the pass that had this problem was the only when the rain was strongest. So, now that the rain stopped we can try again, even faster. Move everybody back to the airport – first to resolve our differences with INFRAERO and then to prepare the airplane to fly again: engine, fuel, clean and seal. Now Gúnar took-off from runway 26, and again started the passes from 08 to 26. The weather was better, but a little bit more turbulent and with a lower ceiling. After three passes, just at the preparation for the fourth pass, Gúnar had to deviate from a cloud and climbed up to 1600ft (our limit is 500m – 1640ft) and taking into account the precision of the altimeter we started to think that we`d lost another try. Gúnar finished the fourth pass (a little bit disappointed) and came to land. Now the team’s mood was a bit apprehensive, waiting for Brian’s result. After a few minutes I saw Brian shaking his head side to side, like a gesture of disapproval… I thought to myself: – Ok, we can fly again… but as soon as I finished my thought he murmured: – How can it be so fast!… Yeah! 360.13km/h A NEW WORLD RECORD FOR 3KM! Now CEA-308, flown by Gúnar Armin, is, definitively, the world’s fastest airplane. A feeling of joy took over the team! After that, there was a fish lunch, paper work, disassembly and road travel back to Belo Horizonte to spend the night with our family (ok, sleeping)…

Three in a row, and in one day!

1 Dec

Today was a great day for CEA-308 project. God has been good with us! I woke up at 05:00AM in order to come to the airport and finish to prepare the airplane for the record attempts. Yesterday we did a test flight just to see if Brian’s GPS is working and we already prepared the engine for today, so the job early in the morning was only clean the airplane and prepare the weighting. To be honest, I could sleep a little bit more, but, to be more honest, I was so anxious and I want to come to the airport to be with 308! So, Gunar and everybody arrived here at 06:15AM and near 07:00AM we were in the end of the runway 08 ready to take-off to Time to Climb up to 3000m attempt. This record wasn’t in our pretention, but after one flight last week in Divinopolis we realize that we were able to set a new record in this category too. This is very impressive because CEA-308 is a racer airplane and it is supposed to flight fast leveled, but last Catto’s propeller increase a lot our ratio of climb and then we decide to try it. So as soon as Gunar release the breaks of the airplane Brian started his stopwatch and after 9 minutes and few seconds latter 308 put Gunar at more than 10000ft above the ground! The last world record, set in Russia was 13 minutes and 40 seconds. Yeah! First record of our life! The only thing that we need to validate it is the sounding results obtained in Galeão airport by DCEA team, but we believe that we will have it tomorrow. So, then was time to prepare the airplane again to try 15km straight course speed record. Meanwhile Leonel Brites and Flavio Oliva arrived at the airport after a heroic trip from São Paulo (raining) to Rio de Janeiro (in war) to Juiz de Fora (by car) arriving there at 03:00AM. Thanks Leonel and Flavio, not only to bring FAI back to Brasil, but also to be here with us! The preparation of the airplane consists in check the engine, put fuel, clean and re-tape all the gaps. At 10:00AM we were ready to take-off again, for 15km speed record. Do you know what? This little airplane is alive… Up to yesterday our leveled speed was 165kts IAS(in optimum conditions) what give us 310km/h of ground speed. Today, the indicated airspeed was 175kts what gave us 329km/h of ground speed and new world record! So, 308 is like a race horse, he knew that we need to be fast today and he did his best to help us! He is really an amazing horse, machine! During lunch time we prepare the airplane again, now for 100 km out and return record. Engine, fuel, clean and seal. The weather started to change and we were in doubt if we would have enough time to fly before the rain… But, as world recorder, 308 show us again that he was fast. He and Gunar did the 108km course in less than 20 minutes, what give us a 326km/h mark, and again, a new world record! Unbelievable, three world records in one day, and in two so different categories, speed and  time to climb! Tomorrow we will try more stuffs here, let’s see what happens!

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