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Old 09-11-2020, 04:50 PM   #1  
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Thumbs up NASA working on wake cruising

NASA’s Armstrong Flight Research Center in California tested new technologies and methods that may help aircraft identify and avoid, or even ride, the wakes created by other aircraft. The Automated Cooperative Trajectories Programmable Autopilot flights, or ACT-PA, involved research flights of a Gulfstream III testbed to research the potential for increased fuel efficiency.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bKWMXTo7Td0
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Old 09-11-2020, 07:31 PM   #2  
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Hypothetical potential, yes.

Lots of technical challenges for airlines, mainly due to safety concerns... it's form flying.

Also lots of complexity involved in coordinating flight teaming... any one airline is not likely to have two long flights on the same route at the same time, they'd just user a single, larger plane in that case. Lots of avionics and training expense for possibly few opportunities to actually do it in the real world.

I think we're going to need to see lots of technical enhancements to improve fuel burn/carbon emissions, but this one probably isn't going to be one of them... we can probably reduce carbon footprint 90% with SAF and various other efficiency initiatives though.
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Old 09-17-2020, 04:39 PM   #3  
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Just dust off the old C130 Station-Keeping Equipment (SKE).
Boy, that would be so much fun!!!!

Adjust the lateral, vertical and distance to stay IN, or just above the Wing-tip Overlap Out of Propwash, and you have a winner. Of course, the pax will be vomiting into their barf bags or helmets, but, you pay for an airplane ride, you get an airplane ride!
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Old 09-17-2020, 05:02 PM   #4  
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Well seeing how often people mess up oceanic tracks... I have very little faith we will be able to surf wakes. It's kind of like the plan to have semi-trailers drafting each other to save fuel. It only works if everyone does their job perfectly and never gets off schedule.
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Old 09-17-2020, 05:58 PM   #5  
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Originally Posted by 2StgTurbine View Post
Well seeing how often people mess up oceanic tracks... I have very little faith we will be able to surf wakes. It's kind of like the plan to have semi-trailers drafting each other to save fuel. It only works if everyone does their job perfectly and never gets off schedule.
Don't worry about it... the automation that replaces us meatbags will be able to handle it with no problem
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Old 09-17-2020, 09:44 PM   #6  
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Default Why Pax Jets could soon be flying formation

https://www.cnn.com/travel/article/a...0YWVNABxz2RGxY

Hmm..I don't think so, screw the 10% fuel saving. But I can see it now, "Delta 123 is at the rally point, need a partner". "American 456 is available but we get to be on top". Delta, well OK.....
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Old 09-17-2020, 09:59 PM   #7  
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Originally Posted by AirBear View Post
https://www.cnn.com/travel/article/a...0YWVNABxz2RGxY

Hmm..I don't think so, screw the 10% fuel saving. But I can see it now, "Delta 123 is at the rally point, need a partner". "American 456 is available but we get to be on top". Delta, well OK.....
So the fuel savings is eaten up by waiting around. Airspace is not like the Brickyard 500. There just aren’t that many birds in a tieght airspace.
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Old 09-17-2020, 10:03 PM   #8  
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Well seeing how often people mess up oceanic tracks... I have very little faith we will be able to surf wakes. It's kind of like the plan to have semi-trailers drafting each other to save fuel. It only works if everyone does their job perfectly and never gets off schedule.
Airline pilots are not like NASCAR drivers. Remember you heard it here first.
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Old 09-18-2020, 04:39 AM   #9  
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Let me know when they get around to section take offs, I'll bring the popcorn.
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Old 09-18-2020, 08:09 PM   #10  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ipdanno View Post
Just dust off the old C130 Station-Keeping Equipment (SKE).
Boy, that would be so much fun!!!!

Adjust the lateral, vertical and distance to stay IN, or just above the Wing-tip Overlap Out of Propwash, and you have a winner. Of course, the pax will be vomiting into their barf bags or helmets, but, you pay for an airplane ride, you get an airplane ride!
The C-17 has digital SKE that you couple to the A/P and A/T, so you can fly formation “hands-off”. I’m sure it won’t take much for the civilians to figure it out too...
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