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"New" Concept (at least to me)

"New" Concept (at least to me)

"New" Concept (at least to me)

Listening to the radio tonight and the speaker mentioned the concept of electrifying the leading edge of an aircraft to reduce the drag by as much as 80%.  This has tremendous implications to me, economically and scientifically, a non-aeronautical.  But I still wonder if there is anything to it.  

It seems like something out of Star Trek - like the application of a VERY primitive electronic "force field" to solve a problem.  

All comments appreciated, but please be easy with me here...  I'm not in my realm.

Mike McCann
MMC Engineering
Motto:  KISS
Motivation:  Don't ask

RE: "New" Concept (at least to me)

I'm not entirely clear of the concept - is the plan to ionize the air or something?

My biggest concern would be how much electrical energy is required and where does it come from.

There are lots of ways to reduce drag that work great in wind tunnels but fail when you have to put them in an aircraft that can actually carry a worthwhile payload a worthwhile distance etc.  

Boundary layer suction is one of these, the combination of the mass of pump & 'tubing', combined with problems of the holes getting blocked by dust & bugs etc. means this has very limited real world application.

Can you point us to any references Mike?

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RE: "New" Concept (at least to me)

Unfortunately not as the speaker was talking in generalities only.  

However, the concept intrigues me as it is only logical to me that the power output would vary as the increase in drag due to speed and other factors.  How this would play out, literally, in fuel savings would be an interesting project.  

Hypothetically, I can see the use of ionization, polariation, or even a "force field" concept, whatever that is, to decrease drag.  But, you're right, suction is a big part too, so how that would play in is beyond me.  

I will see what I can find, but it seems, no pun intended, but convenient, "leading edge" technology, at least in theoretical physics.

Mike McCann
MMC Engineering
Motto:  KISS
Motivation:  Don't ask

RE: "New" Concept (at least to me)

I did get the impression though, that this was something that was in the works, at least being played with, if not used.

Mike McCann
MMC Engineering
Motto:  KISS
Motivation:  Don't ask

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