Yellow Ropes

by Jim Miller on Aug 17, 2018 9:36:45 AM

In the mid 1980’s, while serving in the Canadian Air Force, I had the good fortune, on one of my many adventures, to fly into Sondrestrom Air Base in Greenland. The Base is at the head of a beautiful fjord, so the scenery during the flight to Sondrestrom was magnificent. We arrived in the early summer on a beautiful clear day. I got out of the plane and wandered around the base while the aircraft was being serviced. One feature that caught my eye was all of the bright yellow ropes and stanchions that were strung from building to building. I couldn’t figure out what they were for, so I stopped one of the locals and asked, “Why the Yellow Ropes?”  Now, for those who are not students of the geography of Greenland, Sondrestrom is north of the Arctic Circle, and, apparently, the weather is not always as bright and clear as it was that day! As a matter of fact, one of the meteorological phenomena in the area was virtually instantaneous whiteouts, caused by snowstorms funneling up the fjord. Several people had been caught out between buildings and become disoriented during a blinding storm, a dangerous thing during the long darkness of winter. To eliminate this danger, they had put up the yellow ropes to safely guide people to their destination.

A New Application for Air Brake Dynamometers?

by Francis A. Di Bella, P.E. on Jan 12, 2018 10:33:46 AM

My gym has been crowded with a lot of new people these past couple of weeks. It happens every year in January as people try to stick to their New Year’s Resolution to exercise more. I don’t mind the crowds; they are usually gone by February. One newcomer that did catch my engineering eye, was the new exercycle. It is a bicycle seat with a single, large and bulky looking wheel. The large wheel seems out of place next to some of the other machines that tend to have a much more streamlined appearance. The wheel is spun by the rider much like a typical bicycle and serves to absorb the power from the rider. The exercise cycle is called an Airdyne.

The Challenges of Testing Turboshaft Engines with Dynamometers

by Jim Henry on Apr 13, 2017 5:12:21 PM

The testing of turboshaft engines is necessary to ensure that post-repair performance meets or exceeds requirements for safe aircraft operation.  Testing typically involves several phases such as:  seal break-in; transient response; performance check and control system validation.  Dynamometers are used to simulate the load imposed during operation during testing.

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