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Safety links in tether-set assemblies
Disclaimer: This folder
is a work in progress and is not a
finished treatise nor a guide. This folder is but a place for
exploratory study. Tethering humans in kite systems is a most grave
matter where death and serious injury may too easily be a result of
incomplete engineering or safety practice. Work with experienced tether
and tow people, especially when human life is involved, like in
man-lifting in kite systems, towing manned hang gliders, towing gliders
and sailplanes, parakiting, etc.
Definition: A kite consists of a tether set together with components at both ends of the tether set wherein the end components and tether set reside in media that end up having the tether with a positive tension. Thus, components at the end of a kite's tether set experience resistive forces that may tend to destroy intended form and integrities. To keep a kite operating as intended over-tension is to be avoided.
The most simple kite is simply a simple tether with the tether's end points as simple end components; if such a tether-simple kite is placed in flowing media that involves flow differences on the simple tether-kite to give over-tension to part of the tether, then the tether will become damaged and perhaps fully break.
Damage in a tether component may or may not be evident with cursory inspection. A dream of a tether reporting its real time structure status remains yet a dream; several research centers are advancing on smart ropes, smart lines, smart tethers; the hope is to be alerted to changing structural integrity, changing ability to be all that the engineers want for the tether. To protect components in a working system, a quality-controlled safety link system might be incorporated in the macro system; comprehensive awareness of occurrences following the dislocation in the safety link system is a safety-critical matter; when human life is involved, then extreme exploration of all possibilities of post-dislocation of safety links should be explored and respected. Recoil of tensed components are historical sources of post-safety-link functioning; recoiled parts can kill humans or animals or destroy valuable parts of the environment. Safety links are not the only way to mitigate over-tension in kite systems; one may want to fully explore alternatives (porosity change, shape change, power change, direction change, angle of attack change, payout or length change, braking amount change, etc.). Interested persons are invited to advance these notes.
Discussion places, perhaps
with open banter: