Sunday, September 06, 2009

Mixed Results....

Good news:
The goal for this weekend was to resolve the "heavy wiggles" and fly a clean 90 second tethered flight. We resolved the wiggles and we flew a flight somewhere between 89 and 91 seconds.
We had significant takeoff throttle margin so I can add some more propellant and I'm sould be able to get to 95 or 100 seconds.

Bad News:
Our wireless video system did not work, it looks like the cable coming out of the video camera was intermittent. We did not have wiggle problems, but we had roll, or yaw problems holding a consistent heading. We actually "spun" to the point of the tethers winding up and forcing an abort on a flight. We tried to fix this 4 times and nothing we did had any effect.

After we got home and I reviewed te code, I learned it had no effect be cause the variable set up to be "Rudder" gain was not connected to the loop controlling the "Rudder" (Remember this software was developed on a helicopter and hence has helicopter type coordinates rather than more typical rocket names for the axis.) so I could turn it up to infinity and it would still do nothing.
So we need to try the test again next weekend.

Scary News:
We have 7 more testing weekends and 53 total days before the event .


QuantumG said...

So did you get no video as a result? Good luck on your attempt.

Paul Breed said...

I got video, I have not downloaded it or edited it for length yet.

David said...

This is great. I see it as a very positive flight - lots learned nothing to dramatic wrong. Yes the time scale is tight but my gut feeling is that you will be there with a real good chance. I expect success as you are so very close to the goals. Only issue left (other than the issue shown today is the traversal.

Habitat Hermit said...

David said it well and I don't think the bad news were all that bad either. Anyway your efforts are still unreasonably impressive!