Yesterday at Windward Performance a TV crew came out to prepare a piece on the Perlan Project.
The Perlan build process is now up to full speed with many molds, jigs and parts under construction together. The team in the workshop is now more than twenty people. This recent photo doesn’t even show them all!
It’s the 24th of February, the day before a big day in the Perlan Project. Some came by air, in an ASH25 glider, no less. Most of the team has met up in preparation for tomorrow.
Ed Warnock, our Executive Director, has visited the workshop in Bend and has the following report. Photos by John Miller.
I was amazed at the progress since we were there last. It is visually quite impressive.
The main shop is completely filled with wing construction and a second shop is mostly full with Perlan parts and equipment. As the foam plugs are being assembled and aligned you can see clearly the massive size and area of the wings.
The rebreather system has been rebuilt into its 4th configuration. This is going to be used for testing as it is very close to the final flight configuration. Now that we have access to a suitable frezer, we can do our “cold tests” to check that there are no problems with ice build-up.
The photos show Roger Tanner, our chief pilot, sitting in the test seat. Most of the real changes on the rebreather are out of sight below his left elbow.
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to everyone following the Perlan Project.
December has been a pretty slow month for us but work is continuing. The main development was a decision on the battery system. It turns out the main battery is going to be one really big batery. Even with the latest (and safest) lithium battery technology, it’s the heaviest component inside the plane other than the pilots. A small tank of fuel and a generator would weigh less but we don’t want to have to engineer a way of providing oxygen for such an engine.
We have sucessfully tested one of the candidate flight instruments in wave lift conditions. The new instrument is called a Craggy Ultimate because it provides the ultimate large-screen soaring display for the pilots. It is capable of running any windows CE software and the test Ultimate has a copy of SeeYou installed.