Thursday, October 10, 2013

Gyro in F3x ... things are finally moving a bit !

Thanks to Roman Vojtěch (http://lomcovak.cz/wp_eng/), who relayed the RCgroups debate about the use of gyros in F3B/J/F and expressed his concerned to Tomás Bartovsky who is the Czech Rep. NAC FAI CIAM Delegate but also the RC Soaring Sub-committee chairman. Tomás sent a letter to all NAC FAI CIAM delegates asking to answer a simple question about what is their interpretation of the current rules. The letter is hereafter.

Dear Friends,

At present we experience a kind of technical revolution. The electronic stabilisation devices (hereinafter gyros), which were not working well in the past, are today effective, cheap and readily available. Many years ago, when rules for F3B, F3J and F3F classes were created, the authors could not imagine the development of electronic stabilisation devices. For this reason we have an unsatisfactory description of allowed means in the FAI Sporting Code at present. The German proposal for general banning of gyros, which was prepared for clarification of the unhappy situation, was not accepted at the last CIAM Plenary Meeting. We now live with the doubtful wording of the F3B, F3J and F3F rules and need an early clarification. Unfortunately decisions may be taken only by the CIAM Plenary Meeting or by the International Jury. Both decisions concerning the gyros would be too late. CIAM Plenary Meeting needs more than one year (Rule Freeze not included) for processing of a proposal.  The International Jury has the right to interpret such rules which are not quite clear, but it may act only at the competition. Such decision is too late for competitors who must prepare their models and piloting skill much, much earlier. 

The CIAM FAI Subcommittee has no right to take such decision, because the International Jury is independent, bound only by the FAI Sporting Code and higher FAI Documents. Still I believe that the CIAM FAI Subcommittee may prepare a recommendation which, at our present situation with the gyros, is very necessary. Therefore please send me your opinion concerning the interpretation of the relevant paragraphs in the RC Soaring Volume of the FAI Sporting Code.

F3B
According to paragraph 5.3.1.1
(Definition of a Radio Controlled Glider: Model aircraft which is not provided with a propulsion device and in which lift is generated by aerodynamic forces acting on surfaces remaining fixed in flight, except control surfaces. Model aircraft with variable geometry or area must comply with the specification when the surfaces are in maximum and minimum extended mode. The model aircraft must be controlled by the competitor on the ground using radio control. Any variation of geometry or area must be actuated at distance by radio control.) 

-> the electronic stabilisation devices are allowed       forbidden

F3J
According to paragraph 5.6.1.1.
(Definition of a Radio Controlled Glider: A model aircraft which is not provided with a propulsion device and in which lift is generated by aerodynamic forces acting on surfaces remaining fixed. Model aircraft with variable geometry or area must comply with the specification when the surfaces are in maximum and minimum extended mode. The model aircraft must be controlled by the competitor on the ground using radio control. Any variation of geometry or area must be actuated at distance by radio.)

->  the electronic stabilisation devices are allowed       forbidden

F3F
According to paragraph 5.8.2.
(Characteristics of Radio Controlled Slope Gliders: …Addition of ballast (which must be located internally in the model) and/or change of angles of setting are allowed. Variation of geometry or area is allowed only if it is actuated at distance by radio control…)

-> the electronic stabilisation devices are allowed       forbidden


By ensuring that each country answers to the survey, this will higlight the need of a clarification of the rules.

I invit you also to read the experiment Roman did with an Eagle Tree Gyro yesterday on his Stinger. The outcome is quite interresting.

I really hope that things will finally move one direction or another, then we can smoothly prepare the next WC, and have a crystal clear rule about stabilization devices.

3 comments:

  1. Any variation of geometry must be actuated at disnce by radio. The gyros actually varies the geometry (curvature of foil and/or incident angle) automatically, as an automatic response to the environment around, such us gust or turbulence. With the current rules are clearly forbidden. Leave your transmitter on the flor and rock the plane with giros you will see how it changes geometry. There are gyros that can be switch on/off from transmitter.
    Gonzalo Garcia-Atance

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  2. Very interesting debate. I read Roman's report with interest, but some meaning was a little lost to me - no doubt through translation.. There are plenty of areas in RC where this technology can be used and also develop; but for skill-based competition like the F3X classes? No way Jose! It would kill the classes dead in a few months!

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  3. Gliders react to air movement and become interesting to fly and race because of that. F3f competitions take place in crossed and turbulent wind and become interesting because of that. For feature less controlled flight we have power models, and for me they are less interesting despite being technically more interesting. Imo we must restrict some developments, no matter how interesting they areo to maintain an interesting and accessible to add competition

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