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Thread: Experimental eVTOL innovation

  1. #31

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ron Blum View Post
    ...
    Open Source - and here begins the problem.
    ...
    I would consider myself to be one of the "educated engineers" mentioned above. Of course I would love to be involved in a project like this, but … I need to eat, and I have house, medical and car payments to make.
    ...

    Sounds familiar Ron. I'm a Microsoft engineer from the 90's and 2000's, the era where Open Source was viewed exactly as you described, and I despised it because I have a family to feed.

    "Free work" is STUPID. So why would I think open source is a good route now?

    Two things I've since learned about open source (done RIGHT):

    1. It is profitable, just a different business model behind it.
    2. It is career building (make a name for yourself)


    In the software world, the most "famous" and highly paid engineers are often ones that started (and often continue) in open source, when the thing they built for the world becomes so popular and critical, and EVERYONE wants to hire them. That addresses #2 point above. But also leads to point #1. A few business models that work are as a consultancy (now that you made a name for yourself), or as a support or service (this is how AWS Amazon Web Services makes billions, providing a service built on top of open source linux), or through licensing of the thing you created. There are other really creative business models too, but I'll stop there.

    Now let's apply this to aviation.

    People with an established career may not care about #2. They will either balk at this and not participate, OR they will need to be compelled by a business model that would work and they can be a part of. The way I see it, if an open source design becomes popular and sought after by a segment of the community/market, then there are TONS of opportunities to put a business in place, either licensing the design to a manufacturer, or by getting into the kit building biz, etc. Remember, this isn't the 70's or 80's anymore. Plans-built is dead. ~98% of people out there don't want to scratch build, even if plans are FREE. Therefore the $ is not in the design anyway... might as well make it open! Make sense? The $ is elsewhere, and that $ would belong to any contributor to the plans. This is the model I am working on.

    I agree completely regarding the use of available components (Zero as you mentioned, etc). I'm not trying to invent motors here, I'm trying to come up with a practical horizontal flight eVTOL airplane buildable by home builders with commercially available parts. How many motors? Will the wings rotate, or stay fixed? How will it transition? Should it be a hybrid, or all electric? That takes engineering, and a Tesla junkyard is not going to provide it.

    Lastly, I think it would be pretty cool to see community designed planes. A revolution and shift is indisputably happening in aviation regarding eVTOL. Let's also see a shift in the way planes get designed in the first place too.
    Last edited by dapug; 09-13-2019 at 11:04 AM.

  2. #32

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    The current FAR that exempts experimental from the category and class rating is the law. I don't see how any FAA Order can overtake the Federal Aviation Regulation that went through the full public process.
    I think pilots are only required to read and follow the FAR's.
    This should be challenged with a court case if it hasn't happened already.

  3. #33
    Airmutt's Avatar
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    A bit off topic but...

    FAA orders, notices and bulletins are documents that provide information to FAA employees. These documents are essential sources of information on what the FAA expects of applicants and certificate holders. Most of these documents can be obtained on the FAA’s regulatory and guidance library.
    An order is considered an “internal agency mandate”. It is issued by the agency, to agency staff to explain a position on a specific question not directly addressed by a statute or regulation. Orders, like other non-legislative rules (e.g., ACs, notices, general statements of policy), are not created under delegated authority from Congress and most do not have to go through notice and comment under the APA.
    Orders are meant to be binding (or provide direction) only to FAA employees, and not the public at large. However, if an inspector feels bound to act in a particular way because of direction in the “handbook”, that decision has real practical effect to those subject to FAA regulation. Therefore, internal government documents cannot be contrary to the plain language of the regulation or any clarification in the agency’s preamble to the rule.
    Dave Shaw
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    Learn to Build, Build to Fly, Fly for Fun

  4. #34

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    Quote Originally Posted by Airmutt View Post
    A bit off topic but...

    FAA orders, notices and bulletins are documents that provide information to FAA employees. These documents are essential sources of information on what the FAA expects of applicants and certificate holders. Most of these documents can be obtained on the FAA’s regulatory and guidance library.
    An order is considered an “internal agency mandate”. It is issued by the agency, to agency staff to explain a position on a specific question not directly addressed by a statute or regulation. Orders, like other non-legislative rules (e.g., ACs, notices, general statements of policy), are not created under delegated authority from Congress and most do not have to go through notice and comment under the APA.
    Orders are meant to be binding (or provide direction) only to FAA employees, and not the public at large. However, if an inspector feels bound to act in a particular way because of direction in the “handbook”, that decision has real practical effect to those subject to FAA regulation. Therefore, internal government documents cannot be contrary to the plain language of the regulation or any clarification in the agency’s preamble to the rule.
    That is exactly on topic Dave.
    That says an internal document cannot be contrary to the plain language of the regulation. And 14CFR Part 61.31(k) (2) (B) is clearly plain language, as I see it. Thanks.

  5. #35

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    "I personally am not interested in "manned drone", but rather, horizontal "fixed" wing flight with VTOL ability."

    So... you want to make an EAB Harrier, but powered by electric motors. Get out the foam, balsa and epoxy and go for it. Send pics of the construction progress. Start with a scale RC craft and take it from there. What's the problem? Other than needing a regulation size dump truck full of $100 bills to fund it of course - lol
    "Don't believe everything you see or read on the internet" - Abraham Lincoln

  6. #36

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    In reading all in this discussion, and watching a few videos with music to sleep by while a manned drone flies off with a beautiful model apparently at the controls, I have to ask a question. While building these toys, if certification happens, will the FAA look at engine out performance, glide ratio ( haven t seen one yet with anything to glide on), how about stall spin characteristics ? Is it gonna have a Cirrus type recovery chute ? Yes, new designs will come out, but when you are "killing clouds" and something goes wrong, what will happen ? Sorry, but as a pilot with experiences in the above, gotta ask the question.

    Bill Landry

  7. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by skyfixer8 View Post
    In reading all in this discussion, and watching a few videos with music to sleep by while a manned drone flies off with a beautiful model apparently at the controls, I have to ask a question. While building these toys, if certification happens, will the FAA look at engine out performance, glide ratio ( haven t seen one yet with anything to glide on), how about stall spin characteristics ? Is it gonna have a Cirrus type recovery chute ? Yes, new designs will come out, but when you are "killing clouds" and something goes wrong, what will happen ? Sorry, but as a pilot with experiences in the above, gotta ask the question.
    *If* one of these doo-hickeys is ever certified, you can bet the FAA will require some sort of fallback to keep single-string powerplant failures from causing major injuries. If you've got a man-carrying quad-copter, and failure of one motor or rotor puts the thing into an uncontrollable tumble, the FAA isn't going to buy off on it.

    It may be an auto-deployed ballistic chute, or it may be (as others have suggested) a degraded-operations mode that allows a safe landing. The latter, for instance, might cut the other side's motor in the case of a motor/rotor failure on a quad-copter, and an overspeed mode on the remaining two that deposits the vehicle on the ground at a reasonable descent rate.

    If helicopters couldn't autorotate, the FAA never would have allowed their certification. However, pilots must usually keep to a specific profile to enable safe autorotation...

    It would be assumed that these new powered-lift devices would hard-code such profiles so that their operators stay within them.

    Ron Wanttaja

  8. #38

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    Ron, I understand helicopters can auto rotate, but the blades on these toys would have to be a lot bigger like a helicopters to develop any lift .

    Bill Landry

  9. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by skyfixer8 View Post
    Ron, I understand helicopters can auto rotate, but the blades on these toys would have to be a lot bigger like a helicopters to develop any lift .
    Yes, I know, but the FAA will require a certified powered-lift vehicle to provide equivalent capability...either in the form of a chute, or in a degradation mode. The helicopter HV diagram above was just showing that conventional rotorcraft have bad corners, too.

    Ron Wanttaja

  10. #40

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    New vehicles will have to go through what is now being referred to as "graceful degredation". Earlier Part 23 is "No single failure can be catastrophic." Graceful degredation takes this another step forward with something like: "After a failure, the vehicle must be able to continue safe flight to a landing." Not saying it's not possible, but I don't see a quadcopter being FAA certificable ... hex, octo, etc. is possible.

    Just as a note, the current whole aircraft parachutes are not 0/0 chutes. 0/0 chutes are expensive, heavy and impart high loads on the vehicle and its occupants.

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