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aero saltant

Aero-Cam Slick 360

The Aero-Cam Slick 360 is a South African aerobatics aircraft produced by the Aero-Cam aircraft company of Centurion, South Africa. It is designed exclusively as an aerobatic competition aircraft, to compete in events such as the Advanced World Aerobatics Championships (AWAC).

Development

The Slick 360 was designed to fill a gap in the light aerobatic aircraft segment, as the aircraft which dominate this segment, the Yak-55, Zlin Z-50 and Extra 230 have all ceased production, making them increasingly hard to obtain. While other Extras are still in production (260, 300, 300S, 300L and 330), they are fitted with six-cylinder (260/300 hp) engines and therefore not allowed to compete in the AWAC. New aircraft have been created in an attempt to replace these three, such as the One Design and the Cap 222, but they have failed to dominate, purportedly due to their excessively-high aileron roll rates, which, being faster than their flick roll rates, results in the flick roll scores being downgraded. In addition, their small size has made them difficult to judge. The result being that neither of the two new designs has yet managed to achieve better results than the older established designs, with the past five AWAC events being won by the Extra 230, Zlin Z-50 and Yak-55. This was borne out by the winner of 2003 AWAC, who was a French pilot who chose to fly an Extra 230 despite the fact that he had access to the French team's Cap 222.

Due to this, the Slick 360 was envisaged as a newer version of the Extra 230, using the same basic concept and design, but with as many upgrades and improvements as possible. To this end, the size, basic wing shape and control system of the Extra 230 were used as the basis for the new aircraft, but the flick roll characteristics were designed to be closer to that of the Laser, from which the Extra 230 was originally derived.

The aircraft's wings were made from a carbon-fibre composite material, and designed by François Jordaan, an aeronautical and structural engineer who had previously designed the wings of the Celstar aerobatic glider and the Ravin 500. In addition to the improvements made to the wing itself, the latest aileron designs were fitted, giving the aircraft a roll rate of around 400 degrees per second.

The aircraft is fitted with a Lycoming AEIO-360-A1B6 engine from AeroSport Power of Canada, which is a fully aerobatic-qualified engine with only one restriction due to the oil system: The pilot is restricted to 10 seconds of vertical flight or steep dives; inverted flight, steep dive; zero "g" manoeuvres and wing-down or knife-edge flights.

Operational history

The Slick 360 is still in prototype form, though the first production aircraft are currently under construction. Production is planned at 12 aircraft per year, and a number have already been ordered.

However, the pre-production Slick 360 took part in the South African National Aerobatics Championships in June 2004, achieving the unusual distinction of winning the event in its first outing.

Specifications

{{aircraft specifications |plane or copter?= plane |jet or prop?= prop |ref={name of first source} |crew= one, pilot |capacity= |length main= 5.94 m |length alt=19 ft 6 in |span main= 7.31 m |span alt= 23 ft 11 in |height main= 2.16 m |height alt= 7 ft 1 in |area main= 8.59 m² |area alt= 92.46 ft² |airfoil= |empty weight main= 450 kg |empty weight alt= 990 lb |loaded weight main= 550 kg |loaded weight alt= 1,210 lb |useful load main= |useful load alt= |max takeoff weight main= 645 kg |max takeoff weight alt= 1,420 lb |more general=

  • Load factor: +10/-10 g (+100/-100 m/s²)

|engine (prop)= Lycoming AE-IO-360-A1B6 |type of prop= air-cooled, four-cylinder, horizontally opposed piston engine |number of props=1 |power main=179 kW |power alt= 240 hp |power original=

|max speed main= 400 km/h |max speed alt= 217 knots, 250 mph |cruise speed main= |cruise speed alt= |never exceed speed main= |never exceed speed alt= |stall speed main= |stall speed alt= |range main= 990 km |range alt= 535 nm, 615 mi |ceiling main= |ceiling alt= |climb rate main= |climb rate alt= |loading main= |loading alt= |thrust/weight= |power/mass main= 0.33 kW/kg |power/mass alt= 0.20 hp/lb |more performance= |armament= |avionics= }}

See also

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