For a fun 360 spherical video that can look all around the Patagonia sky, go to Perlan Project's March 29, 2018 Facebook post linked below. Timelapse was used to conserve memory, so it is a bit quick to watch.
In Rosamond Greg Scates, Mike Malis and Jim Payne continue the upgrade progress on Perlan 2. The rear cockpit has the collar around the opening. The tool for the new front hatch is almost ready. The plug is a perfect match of the fuselage. The carbon fiber coupon for new hatches of 14 plies has been tested for strength.
Perlan Project has three primary goals - Exploration, Innovation and Inspiration. Miguel Iturmendi volunteered to be a career speaker at Booker Middle School in Florida to inspire young minds about science and technology in aviation. He talked about Perlan and other projects he has worked with. Other aircraft use pressure suits at high altitude whereas the Perlan 2 is pressurized so the pilots use a helmet and mask for oxygen, but not a pressure suit.
Due to a springtime snow storm in the Northeast the NAA cancelled today’s Collier Trophy competition in Washington DC. It will be rescheduled at a future date. All Perlan’s key personnel were here, ready to tell our story of our significant aviation achievements in 2017.
The absolute hottest ticket at the SSA 2018 Reno Convention was flying the Perlan Flight Simulator. We were maxed out all three days, with over 150 folks getting a real taste of flying high. There was no charge to fly, but the signup sheet showed lots of evidence of pilot name changing! I think there may have been some ticket scalping going on, but "what happens in Nevada, stays in Nevada."
On March 1-3 in Reno, NV the Soaring Society of America held the 2018 national convention. The Perlan 2 glider was the featured display at the front of the convention floor. Many of the Perlan team showed up to work the convention floor. Einar, Ed and Jim put in many hours answering questions about the glider. Tim, Morgan, Alec, and Scott were our workers at the extremely popular Perlan flight simulator (more in a separate blog as this one had too many photos! 15). Susana, Sandra, Linda and Jackie also filled in with hours of support. Stewart and Tago helped with rigging and de-rigging as well as during the convention.
The Soaring Society of America hosted their convention in Reno, Nevada from March 1-3. Perlan Project was featured on the convention floor and at the Friday night OSTIV dinner. The team gathered to celebrate the awarding of two national records from Greg Principato, the president of NAA on Friday. We all know that the entire team contributed to make that high flight possible. For Absolute Altitude 52,221 feet GPS altitude. For Altitude Gain 41,768 feet.
On September 9, 2017 Perlan 2 soared to 35,000 feet but was unable to get higher. So Jim Payne and Tim Gardner made the decision to come back to El Calafate. In the video linked below you can see the spoilers extend upward on each wing. They are called air brakes or spoilers because they spoil the lift across the wing.
You can also see lines of clouds acros the lake. These mark the various harmonics of waves downwind of the Andes Mountains. One of my favorite photos is the nose of the glider backlighted with a halo of shimmering water.