Our July 9th talk was by Ed Hui PhD, of Teddington School. Born in
Hong Kong but a long time resident in the UK, he invented a new
solution to the engineering problem of paper aeroplanes which he
presented at the Royal Aeronautical Society Annual Conference for Young
People. He told the Hawker Association what he told them.
The paper aeroplane is the world’s most popular form
it is safe, accessible, unregulated and has numerous manufacturers! It
is, however, subject to three unspoken laws: 1. It must be dart shaped
with a keel, 2. It must be thrown hard, 3. The rules of origami apply -
no cuts or glue. Ed thought there was something wrong here as all
best gliders have high aspect ratio wings. The Concorde is a poor
glider. Editor’s note - John Fozard used to say that the (low aspect
ratio wing) Harrier glided like a 2/3 full gin bottle.
Ed’s engineering brief was that his paper aeroplane
should be a
high performance glider, not a dart, that it should be capable of
stable indoor free flight, and be made easily and quickly from normal
office supplies. So he devised the Paperang which is folded from a
sheet of A4 paper using scissors and one staple. It is a flying wing
with a span of 11 ½ inches, a chord of about 2 inches and a
edge sweep of some 22 degrees. It has no keel but is folded to
stiff leading edge spar. It is held in its folded shape with the
staple. When carefully, and accurately, folded an aerofoil shape is
naturally formed but washout is added and by bending at the staple a
dihedral angle may be created. When trimmed, by gently adjusting the
shape, the Paperang flies fast and flat, as demonstrated by Ed.
Paper Aeroplanes - Breaking The Rules
There is a final rule for the Papering - it doesn’t
have to be made from paper. Sliced polystyrene sheet makes a very
light, slow flying Paperang. Ed demonstrated that one of these can be
slope-soared and steered round a room by chasing it with a flat
inclined board held behind and below the glider. Polystyrene, unlike
paper, is not sensitive to humidity so a carefully trimmed glider
maintains it shape and flying qualities.
Ed also spoke about early hang gliding at Swansea
University where the fabric swept back wing mounted on a keel assumed a
parabolic aerofoil shape with washout giving pitch and roll stability.
This was the inspiration for the Paperang. Ed showed a remarkable video
of a hang glider flying very low at constant height over a lake.
The vote of thanks for this fascinating talk and
demonstration was given by David Hassard
Instructions can be found at
www.paperang.com/Paperangshare.pdf. To see Ted lecturing and
demonstrating try www.youtube.com/watch?v=GkSxZQChMsA. Sliced
polystyrene can be obtained from Slater-Harrison (Google them).