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HarryO

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Everything posted by HarryO

  1. HarryO

    Prepar3D

    Yes please Peter I will go whatever platform you think is best. I'm hoping that Prepare3D will release with a complete bug fix of FSX and basic performance improvements for latter day hardware. Ben, I share your enthusiasm for CumulusX! Enjoy
  2. Thanks for that B21 and Jcomm. Check out this post with respect to ballast, the wandering albatross bird and climate change! The post is a bit off topic but if you love gliding of all kinds it's a must read. Basically the observation is that as the ocean winds increase over the last few decades, the wandering albatross is able to reach more successful fishing grounds with the prevailing wind which makes them fatter and heavier which increases their wing loading but helps them soar better because the ballast increases their flight performance in the changing conditions. "The researchers found that westerly winds in the Southern Ocean have increased, on average, by 15 percent over the past few decades. Both female and male flight speeds got a boost as a result, with females alone traveling about 311 miles per day in 1990, but about 435 miles per day as of 2010" http://news.discover...eds-120112.html Enjoy
  3. Jcomm having been a long time DiscusX flyer in CumulusX, if you make the move to DiscusK thermalling is more challenging than the DiscusX. I'm only starting to get the hang of the DiscusK. I think the trick is that you have to turn a bit faster in thermals especially if you are not circling in the precise core of the thermal. If you set CumulusX to 100% turbulence effects, what happens is that the DiscusK seems to get thrown out of the thermal much more than the DiscusX if you are flying too slow. The inboard wing is in the lift but the outboard wing is not. In this case it seems that the natural tendancy is to try and push the inboard wing back down against the rising air but if you are flying too slow it seems to induce a stall of some kind and the glider is thrown out of the thermal even worse. So now I try to keep the speed up a bit during thermal turning and not force the glider to do anything it does not want to do. This typically means I seem to be turning the DiscusK at 55-60knots when I could turn the DiscusX a lot slower without being thrown out of the thermal as much. In some respects it might be that the DiscusK is setup with less stability than the DiscusX for extra performance, but making it a more difficult glider to master. Turning faster in thermals means you can bank tighter and stay in the lift. Once you have cored the thermal you are turning faster and have sacrificed some climb rate for the sake of staying out of the turbulence at the edges of the thermal. Flying the DiscusK is a real challenge! It might also help to reduce the sensitivity of the aileron axis a bit. What I found happening is that I would start to oscillate my bank angle trying to core the thermal as I flew too slow then pushed the inboard wing down then to have it pushed back up then me pushing it down again and so the bank angle was not steady. Once the glider is centered in the thermal only a bit of opposite aileron might be needed, but it's the process of trying to get into the lift that is the tricky bit! I don't think it is the sensitivity of my joystick but probably flying style bad habits from the DiscusX. The problems of flying in a thermal also depend on the thermals strength. I am flying between 12pm-2pm in the heat of the Australian summer and the thermals are strong combined with a moderate prevailing wind as well. I'm also experimenting with water ballast in the DiscusK and whether the simulation of ballast makes any sense in FSX/CumulusX. In real life it is a big factor because it helps with settling the glider down in turbulence as well as penetration into the wind and overall efficiency. It sure is fun to see the water streaming out of the back of the glider in the preparations for landing. Enjoy!
  4. This could well be old information for many, but if there are any reasonably experienced CumulusX pilots that know the basics of gliding pretty well but want an extra challenge for thermalling as well as aerobatics, I highly recommend the Discus-K model from Aerosoft. I've been flying the Discus-X model for a long while and assumed that the two were essentially identical but for some cosmetics, but for some reason I don't quite understand I think I was wrong. The Discus-K simulation has taken the enjoyment factor up another notch for me, as well as the difficulty. It is truly a nimble and responsive glider, beautiful to fly and is a nice test of gliding simulation skills. I really love the lack of electronic instruments leaving the experience down to the raw basics of flying itself. The part that surprised me is that the Discus-K simulation actually noticeably reduces the load on the CPU and frame rates (a small effect but noticeable), and increases the thrill at the same time. Just remember to un-comment the water ballast code in the aircraft.cfg file because the developers decided to disable the code by default I think because the K was primarily intended for aerobatics. However it is also a beautiful thermal ship as well! Enjoy Harry
  5. HarryO

    Smart Tow Plan

    If you want a little extra with the CumulusX smart tow plane, add 10% wake turbulence simulation from AS2012 and have some fun! I think it is probably not very realistic but it does add plenty of incentive to stay out of the tow-planes wake that's for sure! Just don't increase it much beyond 10% or the tow rope will snap! Cheers Harry
  6. Hi Peter and Beta Testers For CumulusX I wish you a happy and peaceful Christmas 2011! Have a drink on me. Without a shadow of a doubt CumulusX has been the most enjoyable software I have ever used on a PC. It is infinitely interesting especially when combined with real weather and terrain. I have fired it up again for the last month after my exams and am flying simulated cross country on the east coast of Australia. Wave-lift would be a dream but it sounds like a really hard computer science problem. I hope it is an enjoyable challenge! My processor is an i7-2600 3.4GHz if that gives any guide to how much computer power is readily available these days. Thank you sincerely! Harry
  7. Thanks Peter! For all the support you have given for CumulusX. I wish for you that one day you can chop off the nose of your glider and install one of these with an electric fuel cell rather than batteries : http://www.front-ele...r.com/index.php If I could ask, where are all the CumulusX pilots hanging out in multiplayer these days? What type of multiplayer is most popular that required this update? EDIT: Thanks to Bulau, my multiplayer questions have now been answered. Cheers Harry
  8. The wave seems to move forward with altitude. Cheers
  9. Yeah thanks. The bit I'm amazed at is that the wave height oscillates with altitude. I thought that it would set up wave's but that each wave would be x-shape, y distance apart, and taper off in height gradually by z-amount. This is a difficult problem for FSX when you see what is actually going on. Cheers
  10. Yeah beautiful shot awe inspiring paper as well. What to do in terms of pre-compute/real time calculation with two mountains next to each other in FSX Cheers
  11. Eh Peter The graphics link to your picture is broken at this point. Wonderful paper! Getting the efficiency of the algorithm up is a big challenge. Here are other resources for interested enthusiasts of wave lift: B21's post on wave lift June last year: http://www.forum.aer...showtopic=35874 Great real world practical information on wave lift flying: http://www.canberrag...waveFlying.html Cheers
  12. HarryO

    Roll Clouds

    Thanks anyway and best wishes for the new year 2011 Peter and fingers crossed that you can achieve a wave lift algorithm this year! Here is a link to the Canberra Gliding Club who fly the real thing! http://www.canberrag...waveFlying.html Cheers Harry
  13. HarryO

    Roll Clouds

    Hi there Was flying in the simulator on a typically nice cumulo cloud morning as depicted by CumulusX/ASE/REX2. The CumulusX simulation will allow cumulo clouds to form into bands or lines of cumulus clouds in certain situations and that phenomonen was particular strong that morning. It got me thinking.... I was flying the glider parallel along a distinct band of cumulo that had formed a line allowing me to make some decent progress in distance at no cost. The glider's altitude was greater than the cloud base flying adjacent to the clouds themselves. Fly too close and you hit the turbulent sink. Fly into the cloud line and you get turbulence and cannot see left from right. But if you fly parallel to the cumulo line just outside of the turbulence area ahead of the line, you hit an area of very slight and smooth lift where the glider's normal ~1.7ft/sec sink rate is cancelled out. I do not know why the simulation does this, but try it for yourself and see. The experience truly felt something like what it must be to fly ahead of a line of rolling clouds! The interesting bit is that the shape of the CumulusX clouds when they sit in a line almost look like a roll cloud already! (see attached image). If the simulation already creates a line of subtle lift parallel to the band of clouds, all that has to happen in CumulusX to make the band of cumulo "roll", is to put the clouds closer together so that there are no gaps , then spawn new cumulo objects ahead of the band and delete the old cumulus objects at the rear of the band , and the cloud line would essentially appear to "roll" forward in a line . I realise that the degree of the updraft ahead of the cloud would be wrong relative to reality, and also the downdraft at the rear of the line would be wrong too, but it's an idea anyway. Here in Aus we have the amazing Morning Glory Phenomenon (see attached). I'd say this phenomenon could be implemented in CumulusX but I totally appreciate that it is not as easy as I think, that it takes a lot more time than I think, and that it will possibly never be simulated because the phenomenon is too rare in the real world to bother to simulate. Whatever. Thought I would throw my two cents worth in. Cheers Harry
  14. Hi there Thanks Peter and team for CumulusX1.8 (and WinchX) this year! It completely blew me away as an experience of simulation gliding in FSX! It has provided such an opportunity to experience something of what it must be like to fly gliders in the dynamic skies! There is so much subtlety in the simulation and so much still to both learn and to have fun with.... Sincere best wishes to you Peter and team into the future and enjoy the Christmas break! Thank you for being so generous to share your talent, experience and your time this year for such a small voluntary donation outlay. It is a very special experience you have given to us. Three Cheers! Harry
  15. Eh Hodge If you make a simple mission, I'll give it a go too . You would be then already one step ahead of me, for I have not a clue how to construct one.
  16. Wonderful stuff B21 thanks for sharing that! Could listen to these experiences all day . My gut feeling knowing the country and the weather in the real world that the simulation took place in, I think a full size sailplane could have climbed out from 500 feet AGL as happened in the simulator. If it is true what I said regarding the wing loading of a full size sailplane being a factor of ten more than the R/C equivalent, the efficiency of the scaled up wing of the full size sailplane is higher which would compensate for the extra wing-loading to some degree I guess. It comes down to how tight you can turn a full size sailplane at low altitudes without stalling a wing and without loosing the only benefit of the slightest lift. Wonderfully scary The point is that not loosing height or loosing it only slightly is a good thing in these situations! As an R/C sailplane pilot I have definitely experienced situations where coming off the bungee at 600 feet AGL, the lift is so intense that without deliberately stalling the glider or applying fall brakes or doing some radical aerobatics, the bird will not descend the lift is so intense! What I did NOT fully appreciate and so thank you for this knowledge is that you mentioned that the probability height to land out actually increases with the increasing cumulo cloud base (dependent on a number of factors of course). It makes total sense because a thermal actually separates from the ground as a bubble in the real world I guess, and so in your example, below 3000 feet AGL there might not be much use-able lift. I think I have kind of experienced this phenomenon even in the simulator that cannot truly model bubbles of rising air but I think I was imagining it perhaps..... Ok, one thing that you cannot do in the real world that you can in the simulator is put the flight on pause, save it and come back to it a day later refreshed, de-sweated, de-stressed and re-energised. Some compensation at least! Cheers Harry
  17. Hi there Check this situation out in CumulusX. I took off by winch at 10.30am (simulator time) in the DiscusX. Cumulus cloud bases around 3000feet and ground elevation 500 feet. The intention was to go for a cross country flight northwards in a very light tail wind. I knew I was in the simulator not real life and thus decided to try the journey with these marginal cloud bases. Everything was ok until about 13km north of the airport I missed a critical thermal to stay aloft (see the attached plot). Struggling for lift I flew above a paddock area suitable for emergency landing but a cumulo at 3000 feet bang overhead was providing lift as low as 900 feet with the ground beneath at only 400-500 feet! I know that in real life I would never be thinking about thermalling Id be planning the landing pattern into the paddock looking for electricity wires etc well before then, but in the simulator it was a heck of a lot of fun to attempt to stay in the thermal (needed a lot of intense concentration). Question is, would this be theoretically possible in the real world even if it were never to be attempted for sake of survival (to catch a thermal from 500 feet above deck!) Check out the ground elevation and my altitude gain verses the conditions on the attachments. With R/C model gliders that have a wingloading from what I can gather about 10 times less than a full size glider, conditions like this at that height can speck the model out to 2000 feet in a very short period of time as the thermal strength is huge. So I guess a full size sailplane might be able to struggle in the lift and just succeed as happened in the simulator. Cheers Harry
  18. Ok thanks! The main question has been answered. I doubt that the weather mode in ASE is what is causing or making the problem worse. It's just a function of the graphics engine. I think that is what I am experiencing as I experiment with the weather engine depiction modes. Cheers! Harry
  19. Hi there Wonderful wonderful software this CumulusX and must have taken a bucket load of time to develop..... I do not have real world experience in gliders just experience with R/C model equivalents. Personally I think that the CumulusX turbulence depiction of the DiscusX entry into the initial margin of a thermal seems a bit "soft" because I imagine that mother nature has a bit of a bite at the pilot to teach them respect before she lets them cooperate with her in harmony So I experiment a bit with the "turbulence" feature in the CumulusX settings. It is at "0" by default but what do the real world glider pilots out there (like Peter and B21?) have it set to? Cheers Harry
  20. Hi there Just more thanks and appreciation to the developers of CumulusX Peter and testers. I have a question about the behaviour of CumulusX with the latest release of ASE external weather engine. It supports a third weather mode "Smooth Cloud Transitions": Smooth Cloud Transitions "Smooth Cloud Transitions depiction mode uses enhanced SimConnect weather writes that supports transitional cloud depictions that change over a period of 30 seconds. May result in inconsistent weather parameters at locations other than departure area and in winds aloft. Recommended for short-range and local flights or where visual cloud smoothness is preferred over accuracy" Firstly I do no know what they are trying to say actually but what I notice is that CumulusX thermals work correctly as per usual in this mode but the graphics engine seems to send all the CumulusX clouds into the background and put all the REX/ASE/FSX clouds in the foreground. So what you get are these beautiful REX cloud depictions of cirrus drawn in front of the CumulusX clouds. It looks a bit like a surreal dream experience . I think the effect was also present in standard depiction mode as well as "direct weather control" mode but not as bad. Any thoughts anyone? Cheers, thanks again for all the hard work on CumulusX! Harry
  21. Eh Phil Yeah I use FPS limiter with CumulusX. I agree that it seems to make panning a little smoother than without. CumulusX seems to work well on my system alongside FPS Limiter. Perhaps you should try again but from a different approach? It is absolutely sure that with only FSX and CumulusX running, everything works, but as soon as you add FPS Limiter, it stops working? Cheers Harry
  22. Yeah totally agree. The way that it behaves in the simulator along with CumulusX! makes you keep coming back for more. Always something interesting in the simulation. Gone are the days when it felt dead. We can thank Peter and Aerosoft. I fly with real world weather (ASE) and that is too cool. If you want to smooth out the CumulusX! clouds that sometimes look like little grey "brains" floating in the sky :-), buy REX2 and the mix of their cumulo clouds with Peter's makes it look very nice. Enjoy. Cheers
  23. Thanks Peter Appreciate your thoughts. They are acting as a catalyst. The dyndns approach allows a static IP and that is very hopeful. It is a pity that FSX does not allow users to enter in a domain name into the LAN setup but there is a possibility that client connection could be automated to some degree as an option for those who want to simplify that connection process (via windows scripting). The idea I have is to use other types of "live" technologies that integrate with a central web site and database, so that CumulusX clubs can be be organised, planned and to know the readiness of the host at flight time. Client pilots need to know that the host is live and ready to start the club session. The web page tells the client pilots the session details (training, cross country etc etc) as setup by the host. The web also tells client pilots about other participants like instructors involved in the session, if for example it is a training session. The list of possibility goes on and on. The central way that I think the club approach holds itself together is in two ways: 1) Somehow, I want to restrict client pilots to be registered users of CumulusX! I think that is a critical path because it will tend to filter out uncooperative client pilots. It also provides a funding path to the developer of CumulusX! 2) Hosts gain reputation when client pilots later rate the session at the central web site. This way clients get a feel for the likelihood of a reasonable experience the next time that the host conducts a session. What does the host get for all the work? What does any volunteer get for all their work? My personal motivation would be as a host. Why would I bother? Because CumulusX! is about learning about the natural environment and having fun. Any contact with the natural environment, even virtual contact, means that awareness about the natural environment increases. This is fundamentally good. I mean yesterday was a ridiculously good session. Not a cloud in the sky and difficult to find lift, but found some ridge lift at 15 knots off a 2000ft hill just enough to stay aloft but nothing more. This gave me the time to wait for a blue thermal and away! Now that is cool to be able to have fun like this in a simulator. This scenario would be possible in reality and now it is possible in a simulator. So unresolved questions now are: 1) How to detect that clients are registered users of CumulusX!? 2) Now that "MS Flight" has been announced and that the first prototype is in the development stage, how long until release and does it matter for CumulusX! anyway? How long is the development cycle for a complicated flight simulation assuming that it would actually have a thermal/ridge simulation as useful as CumulusX is now? Cheers, Harry
  24. Hi there I'm experimenting now with establishing an internet based community LAN for CumulusX! pilots. The test bed is nice. Two FSX/CumulusX machines on the bench next to each other with completely separate internet connections. If you need anything tested in MP, there is at least a chance. This is what I have done so far: 1) DynDNS: if you ping cumulusXclub.dyndns.org, you get the IP that I used in the last cumulusX multiplayer test session 2) Tested FSX/LAN/DirectIP using that IP across the two internet connections (when they were live). Framerates seemed very reasonable. 3) Tried Hamachi - As Peter says, it is not needed but does work Questions I now have: 1) Can FSX simconnect set up a client LAN session in FSX if the simconnect application knows the required IP? Would be very surprised if it could, because of security issues. The idea is to develop a simple web based application that advertises times when FSX LAN hosts will be hosting live CumulusX sessions and what the details of that session will be. Clients would connect with a client app that at the very least supplies the basic details like the IP address, but preferably automates the process as much as is possible. To alleviate security issues as much as possible, clients do not get access to the CumulusX session specifics, unless they are registered users of CumulusX. Hosts would be able to register their interest to advertise sessions based on a history of good behaviour. Any thoughts? Cheers
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