How can gliders fly without propulsion | The most complete explanation

How can gliders fly without propulsion | The most complete explanation

Gliders or sailplanes are a kind of aircraft
that differ from the rest by their ability to fly great distances without
the need for an engine or propulsion of any kind even gaining altitude during their flight but, how is this possible? That is what I will answer today in this video. Welcome to Joyplanes RC 2. [INTRO] Personally, gliders are my favorite aircraft because they don’t need an engine to fly and because of the long impressive wingspan
they have but their long wings have a reason to be. Let’s start with the basics we know that an airplane can fly or glide
without an engine but in the process it will gradually lose
altitude and depending on its weight aerodynamics and other physical facts it can
go down faster this happens with every airplane regardless of whether they are gliders or
not without an engine it is possible to fly
for some distance and land as long as a constant speed and descent rate
is maintained to be in a stable flight but the gliders are designed to take full
advantage of this balance of forces the gliders are made with lightweight materials and the weight is distributed at strategic
points in an efficient manner to improve air penetration and the configuration of their wings allow them to have more lift with less aerodynamic drag as a result their glide ratio is one of the
most efficient among all airplanes The glide ratio is the distance that the aircraft
can travel in respect to the lost altitude for example a Cessna 172 has a glide ratio
of 9 or 9: 1 which means that if its engine stops working it can fly from 100 meters of height for about
900 horizontal meters in modern gliders this gliding ratio can be between 40: 1 to 70: 1 which means that if a glider has a 50: 1 ratio then it could fly for 50km if it starts at
1km high making it capable of covering long distances
in this way Still it is impossible to gain altitude for
an aircraft that moves through a static atmosphere without the use of propulsion of some kind luckily our atmosphere is not static at all to gain altitude gliders can take advantage of various atmospheric
phenomena There are three main phenomena the ridge lift thermals and wave lift Thermals are the most mentioned way to gain altitude in a glider these are columns of hot air that is generated
by a surface heated by the sun this air becomes less dense than the surrounding air and begins to rise rapidly the glider when entering a thermal can begin to fly in a circular pattern to stay inside it and gain altitude until the thermal disappears or weakens the other way to gain altitude is with the
ascending currents of air on the slopes of the mountains this is simply air that is forced to climb
the mountain and a glider can take advantage of this current to gain or maintain altitude the closer to the slope the stronger the climbing
rate the last form is the use of air waves that
are generated after the air passes through the mountain these waves extend for several kilometers and are invisible waves similar to the waves of the sea Using these strategies to gain altitude a glider can stay in flight for many hours this is totally free and clean energy that glider pilots gather and manage to get the most out of it However to make a glider take off you need an airplane that will tow it to an acceptable altitude where the glider can start by itself another way is to take off with a tow winch
from the ground but the altitude that it gains is not as much as that of the first method hopefully on a sunny day the glider can take
a thermal that makes it fly longer others Wways to take off a glider is from
a mountain with a system of elastic ropes on a hillside or by having a retractable propulsion system integrated into the glider that is only used
to take off or gain the altitude needed Why long and thin wings? the thin wings generate less induced aerodynamic drag than the common wings that are seen in self-propelled
airplanes this way the glider can pass through the air
with less difficulty obtaining the same lift and losing less speed
than other airplanes another factor that helps for better Aerodynamics is the design of the fuselage making everything as smooth thin and aerodynamic as possible which is why the pilot enters the cockpit in much the same way as a Formula 1 driver
in his car (almost lying down). the wings are also measured by aspect ratio glider wings have a high aspect ratio and war airplanes wings have a low aspect
ratio war or acrobatic aircraft wings generate more induced drag than thin wings of gliders but because they are short wings they are more maneuverable maneuverability is a priority in warplanes
rather than fuel efficiency in the case of gliders it isn’t necessary
to make quick maneuvers so priority is given to efficiency sacrificing
maneuverability The wings end up being naturally long because a large wing area is required with the restriction of a reduced cord wing to minimize drag Gliders are built to be very light but strong
at the same time they even become so light that you have to put more weight on the wings to improve their penetration and speed characteristics this is done by filling the glider with water
ballast in special tanks inside the wings the total weight of this ballast can be even
higher than the pilot’s weight the water can be drained during the flight in case the thermals are not so strong and must also be drained before landing In the beginning gliders were made out of
wood with fabrics or metal and then the use of composite materials Fiberglass carbon fiber and kevlar was introduced achieving a huge resistance with a very light
weight Flight instruments Gliders are equipped with the basic instruments that can be found on any other aircraft except for flight instruments associated with the use of an engine the most used and necessary instruments are the anemometer Altimeter Variometer and compass You can also find a turn coordinator Sometimes an accelerometer and tools such as a radio and a GPS One of the most basic indicators that are still used even in high-performance
gliders is the yaw string it is a small string that is placed on the
outside in front of the pilot that indicates the wind
direction in regarding to the glider flight if the string is not centered it must be corrected using the rudder and that way the pilot makes sure that he
is flying efficiently Otherwise that means that the fuselage is off by some degrees in respect to the flow of
air and that generates a lot of drag It is important to be aware of the speed at
all times since if the glider gets to slow than recommended it is possible to lose some control and go
into a stall also depending on the design there is a specific speed in which the glider has the maximum efficiency between descent
and distance traveled to measure the speed at which the glider goes
with respect to the wind the anemometer is used the airspeed is different from groundspeed the variometer indicates the speed of climb
and descent this instrument is super important to know when the glider is beginning to climb usually when it enters a thermal and thus stay within the thermal the gliders are equipped with a system that
generates a sound depending on the speed of ascent or descent with this sound you can more easily identify if the glider is going up or down without having to look at the indicator all
the time as you have already seen in this video gliders are a very interesting type of aircraft especially because they don’t burn any type
of fuel to stay in flight only the natural energy available in air currents nowadays gliders are used for sports and recreational
purposes I give special thanks to Stefan Langer who is a glider pilot you can see his channel in the description
of this video Making the animations the editing and post production in general
of this video has taken me a couple of months it would be great if you could support me through a small donation link in the description or even a like and share is also appreciated also consider subscribing to not miss more
videos like this or videos in which I make rc airplanes drones or similar projects for now I will see you in the next project

100 Comments on “How can gliders fly without propulsion | The most complete explanation”

  1. I went in one when i was 8 Dont remember at all . I just rember that I wanted to crash with another glider so I can parachute ! haha

  2. Me Delhi me haha rehta tha. Eaha bihari rehte te. Jaise kuwarima14. Faltu log. Dimag chaatnewake. Jitna last mark fir wapis as jayenge.

    Gyan baatne. Thamancha.

  3. People are still to this day stunned when you tell them you can glide for hours and over 100s of miles with no engine.
    Gliding is the only firm of flying as naturally as a human should. Glider/paraglider pilots are the best pilots you'll find.

  4. This means humans can fly but they feed us aluminum in these foods and even in the rain to keep us here‼️ Guys to watch or look up “Spiritual So” !!

  5. First video I saw in your channel and I subscribed and liked excellent work👌 just some questionshow gliders land? And if you are. In a. Big. Altitude and you stall does the pilot. Have parachute or. Something?

  6. I want one. How much would it cost me to get a licence, and some basic glider model? First time flyer here, but I often fly in my dreams 🙂 I wish for a day when dreams come true…

  7. Thanks for the info. Love gliders but I will never fly one without propultion wich could be electric powered by solar energy. I dont like that plane towing idea.

  8. Now we have flexible solar panels .
    Why not set them up at the wings they are very thin and light and use a battery powered propeller (i saw a video of the person you mentioned with one) to gain altitude and just keep flying for longer duration and distances !
    And i would also love to know how much distance can they cover with time ? Like if its a sunny day with solar powered glider one can fly like for 10 hours maybe ?

  9. Amazing vídeo!!!!! I am a glider instruction, may I use it on classroom to my students, also, I may translate it to them making another video with your copy right of course. May I?

  10. But what if something goes wrong? like they stall or don't have enough lift? And in case if they want to abort a landing? How will they manage ?

  11. is there any contingency plan or backup engine in case of bad weather or requires propulsion to save the life of the pilot?

  12. Very cool video except you didn't mention that gliders do aerobatics! Not only can they do it, but they're used to compete at very high levels. The MDM-1 Fox is one example of a really good aerobatic glider, able to pull +9/-6 Gs, and the Swift S-1 can pull +10/-7.5! It's a completely different world of flying than using thermals to fly long-distance and I personally think it's super fun and interesting because of the challenges. You should make another video about it!

  13. Basically we could have giant commercial gliders (fuel efficient and easier to land) and we decided to pay the tool of pollution just to be at our destination faster? We suck as a species. We are failing nature just to be a little bit more comfortable!

  14. Hi everyone, I am Thowzeef here. My kids and I have just started a YouTube channel named “Lu La Ba Kids”. It would be great if you all share, subscribe and support us, so that we can do more entertaining and informative videos. Thanks. And Have a great FRIDAY 😄

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