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La Mouette Jet


Forerunner of the Atlas, the 1978 Jet was not a double surface, because the transverse was not integrated. The Jet was quickly transformed into Atlas by reducing the double surface.
The Jet was a dangerous wing. In sliding or at high speed, the intrados swelled down and became an extrados. There was no batten. In a second the wing was tumbling and the shock of the pilot destroyed the wing.
Claudius Labuthe, an engineer at the ONERA (national aeronautical research and research office), discovered the taint of the JET. On an access road at the Vilacoublay aerodrome, the objective of the "manipulation" as Claudius said, photograph the intrados of the wing with different incidences. To do this, Labuthe and René Coulon glued fluorescent strips on the intrados and mounted the wing on a mini tray that Coulon had built on the roof of a Rancho matra. Claudius was driving and Coulon was on the roof. They made several trips without any loss of lift. In a final attempt, the rope holding at the end of the leading edge broke. Coulon clung to the trapeze as the wing swiveled on the yaw axis and then rocked forward on the pitch axis. The next day, the development of the photographs showed that in oblique attack the intrados swelled, passed in profile biconvex, source of instability in pitching. Laying a single intrados lath was the solution.
Wing area: 15.5 m²
Wing span: 9.8 m
Aspect ratio: 6.2
Hang glider weight: 22 kg
Minimum pilot weight: 50 kg
Maximum pilot weight: 70 kg
Packed length: 5.8 m
Number of battens: 12
Nose angle: 120°

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