Primarily for general aviation discussion, but other aviation topics are also welcome.
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By cockney steve
Agreed, it's a bit of a setback, but, hey, aren't you all forgetting something?- it's his JOB! Yes! it affords him a comfortable living, -As posted by the man himself, he's quite happy to sell his skills elsewhere, if the offer ticks enough of his boxes.

Sorry, I'm also in the doubter's camp. The fact that the "tear open and deflate" mechanism is a built-in design- feature, does nothing to persuade me of it's plusses i just see a serious potential failure-mode.
Terrafugia, Moller, and others have made a living spending other-peoples' money, having fun, building great machines that, for practical and legislative reasons are not going to be a commercial reality in our lifetime...Apart from anything, Drone technology has rendered all the legacy designs obsolete.

No doubt Airlander will have/develop a Molecular Sieve to filter out it's own Helium , or is BOC or Air Products doing them a special deal? I hate to think how much that deflation has cost.
As a younger man, I would have loved to be involved in something like that, and be paid handsomely for it, to boot. Alas, the nearest I came, was helping to build the prototype C-Class catamaran aerofoil mast, which enabled the craft to sail upwind with no sails set...that, too, tended to try and break away from it's moorings. :?
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By kanga
With no relevant technical expertise, but having attended the excellent presentation at our Strut ..

It seems to me that neither mishap involved nor as yet reported demonstrated any shortcomings of the aircraft. Rather the complex issues including ground crew discipline and infrastructure needed for safe approach and masting may not yet have been fully explored. Perhaps only some early mishaps could have exposed these shortcomings. In the previous dirigible era, there were huge numbers of found crew involved in masting and mooring, which would be uneconomic today, so these issues may be challenging.

I wish the project team every success in overcoming these challenges too. :thumright:
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By Bobcro
As I was away from civilisation as we know it for a few days I only caught up with the full story on Monday. Like many I have always wished HAV well in their efforts but cautioned them in not to try and sell the Airlander as being all things to all people.

From being promoted as a heavy lifter into remote regions, a luxury air tourer and surveillance vessel with an endurance of several days it seems to have a problem with safe masting at its home base and resting overnight in calm conditions.

Every time it masts it needs to be free to weathercock and just how do these experienced ground crew members arrive at the destination, they must be trained beforehand have masts at each landing site. Perhaps they belay down on its first pass.

They now have the task of rolling up very heavy and unwealdy wet envelope, inspecting its condition and assessing the cost and feasibility of repair and at the same time relocating their offices, place of business.

I do hope that they are adequately covered by insurance and that it is, unlike the Vulcan to the Sky, not another case of smoke and mirrors and repeated calls for even more cash.

I wish them well.
By neaton
I wish them well too.

It is, perhaps, noteworthy that they have paused the latest call for funds while assessment takes place. An email to shareholders said: "We have paused for the time being collecting any payments in respect of the current fundraising and will be back in touch once we have determined our best course of action.". A correct course of action in the circumstances.
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By joe-fbs
Bellow is the latest from the BBC (but largely quoting the company). Hopefully you will all understand that at the moment I won't be answering questions or entering into discussions.

Assessments are currently taking place on how to move Airlander 10 - the world's longest aircraft.
It is currently flattened on the ground after it broke free from its mooring and deflated on Saturday at Cardington Airfield.
Its developer, Hybrid Air Vehicles (HAV), says it's a "minor engineering challenge" to move the 20-tonne craft and is working out how best to do it.
"Until we're satisfied that we understand the causes [of it breaking free and collapsing], then we'd prefer to have the evidence as it stands right now rather than moving it, which could potentially alter some vital clue," a spokesman said.
When it's moved, the craft will go into Hangar 2 at Cardington, next door to its home of four years at Hangar 1, after HAV decided not to renew the lease.
The company says it is "100% committed" to re-building the airship and is working out where best to be based in the long term.
It said this could mean remaining at Hangar 2 or moving to a new base. Back-office operations have already moved to Bedford.
A spokesman added it had "plenty of choices" about the future and didn't want to be "hasty" on deciding its next steps.
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By gaznav
Looks like the light winds have written it off. I can’t see this ever recovering again as even if they get the money from the insurers to build another who would insure it after 2 accidents in such a short space of time?

From the company website:

Our incident with the pre-production Airlander aircraft on Saturday 18 Nov has resulted in substantial damage. Our initial assessment is that the aircraft detached from its moorings in light winds for reasons that will be determined from our ongoing investigation. The aircraft is now deflated and secure on the edge of the airfield, and is being recovered to Hangar 2 at Cardington..

There were no serious injuries resulting from this ground incident.

The damage to the Airlander aircraft will result in a claim under our insurance policy of up to £32 million, being the maximum insured value.
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By Sooty25
joe-fbs wrote:Its developer, Hybrid Air Vehicles (HAV), says it's a "minor engineering challenge" to move the 20-tonne craft and is working out how best to do it.

" I say chaps, what we need is a really big airship to pick it up with!"


On a serious note, I don't have an opinion on the viability of the project either way, but I do wish all the staff, including Joe, the best of luck for the future, whether that is continuing with Airlander, or elsewhere.
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By mikeblyth
Well sad to say all gone, came across this

Make a lot of films at Cardington would love to see a drama about the R101 good story
with sad ending bit like the Titanic. BBC made a radio serial called the magis carpet
a few years back. Hope Mr Spielberg is a forumite :D
By bnmont
A question for joe-fbs .
I have yet to gain permission to pm you.
I wonder whether you are still doing talks on Airlander. This would be local to Bedford at Sandy microlight club. Could you pm me please.
Thanks Brian
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By joe-fbs
I and others are still giving talks. As I have now flown in it (FTE, not pilot), I have some new experiences to share. I’ll PM you my work email address.
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By joe-fbs
My next talk is at Sandy Microlight Club on Friday 16th February. It will be updated to cover recent events including my flight on 17th November.
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By joe-fbs
The club is providing hot food so you must pre-book via

airlanderevening at gmail dot com

The club makes a small charge to cover the food then donates any excess to air ambulance (for the avoidance of doubt, I do these events for fun not money).
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