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03-14-2013


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E-Combat Workshop-Report
Dear E-Combat pilots and enthusiasts,

the Workshop was some time ago, but nevertheless I would like to send
you the report which was completely and pretty over-worked by Mark:

Our Kick-Off-Meeting, with workshop and competition, was a big success.
Due to the much lower noise level as compared with F2D models, we were
allowed to use and enjoy the incredible infrastructure of a Bavarian
sport training center just south of Munich.  Participants enjoyed
hotel-like full room and board service, directly on site.

In preparation for the workshop, we announced our plans via online
forums and sent out a questionnaire for input from interested pilots who
would not able to meet the workshop. In total, 15 people from Germany,
Austria, Netherlands, Denmark and USA participated at the workshop.  On
Saturday, we began with two presentations (videos available online at
F2D.dk) about the integration of the electric powertrains into F2D
models, the advantages and challenges associated with E-Combat, and the
technical potential of motors, controllers, batteries and throttle
control.  In the competition that followed, we demonstrated exciting
E-Combat matches, with speed and action in some cases rivaling that of
F2D.  Interestingly, four out of the nine participating pilots were
former F2D pilots, who were "reactivated" by the possibilities embodied
by electric flight.

Sunday's discussion of future prospects for E-Combat competitions was
positively inspired by the experiences and observations made at
Saturday's competition. We took the very constructive replies of the
questionnaire and the concerns expressed by some F2D pilots into careful
consideration. The workshop participants unanimously agreed on the
following plan for moving forward.  Rather than making a hasty proposal
to CIAM, which could have widespread unintended consequences and would
make future refinements much more difficult, we prepared a flexible set
of guidelines for the international community to consider in setting up
E-Combat competitions in the next 2 years.  The guidelines include
technical specifications, which are intended to help gently guide the
development of E-Combat technology towards a standard of performance
that matches that of current F2D models, with reduced noise at a level
compatible with flying in urban/suburban areas.  For ease of
verification on-site, and to place a minimal amount of restrictions on
research and development, the framework specifies only weight limits for
the motor and ready to fly model (with battery), as well as an RPM limit
to keep propeller noise in check. We have also included a variety of
ideas for the organization and running of E-Combat contests, including
alternative match procedures and scoring schemes. 

The coming two years are meant to be an exploratory period, in which we
hope E-Combat contests will be held by various groups around the world,
using the guidelines as inspiration.  We seek to promote an open
dialogue among all E-Combat enthusiasts, where experiences and
observations will continue to be shared.  Feedback after every E-Combat
contest should be discussed, and the guidelines updated accordingly to
account for new findings, including potential issues of safety and
technical specifications for keeping an even playing field.  After the
two year period, we will meet again for a new workshop to discuss the
developments over this time, and to evaluate the best path forward.  In
particular, at that time we may reassess the question of whether to seek
integration of electric power into F2D, or to create a separate class
within CIAM.

We look forward to increasing growth in the numbers of new E-Combat
pilots and competitions in the future, and to the feedback that will
come as more and more activity takes place.  Happy flying to all!

Mark

In the attachment you get the rule guideline which was prepared at the
workshop. The only modification was the reduction of the ready to fly
model weight with battery from 700 to 625 g, because we want to keep
F2D-sized models.

I will prepare a special E-Combat homepage at:
http://www.control-line-team.de/home/index.html
with informations and resources about E-Combat. We will also create an
E-Combat specific forum. As soon as this projects have started, you will
be informed.

I look forward to your constructive support of the technical and rule
development of E-Combat and a lot of fun at E-Combat competitions.


Best Regards,
Lothar
Rules, Aug. 2013
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