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 Passive Cyclic Power-Depower of a Looping Foil

A common early experience in developing AWE is to try a concept and not get the maximum theoretic power. Then by many small optimizations, mostly tunings, the missing power gradually emerges. Passive looping foils have been working pretty well for KiteLab Ilwaco for a few years now, but one final block of hidden power was to modulate the kite's "brakes" (kite usage) or "flaps" (aviation usage) during the loop cycle. By this means, one can either increase the amplitude of the power sine-wave while reducing the static load or even out the dynamic load. It is possible for a simple pendulum mass mechanism to "passively" regulate this parameter, or by active control. In a major looping mode, a clockwise loop would depower at around 2 o'clock for a brief recovery phase, and power up around 7 o'clock, for maximal pumping performance.

CoolIP                       ~Dave Santos           June 10, 2011          

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Terms and aspects:   

  • passive looping foils
  • brakes  (in kite usage)
  • flaps (in aviation)
  • loop cycle
  • pendulum mass mechanism
  • static load
  • dynamic load
  • recovery phase
  • pumping phase

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Commentary is welcome:

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