The battle for EMC Nagykaniza 2017
Jaktorów November 2017
Last day of competing on a Hungarian airfield Nagykaniza. One task left, which is to settle the podium. You could get 1000 points at most and the differences between first three places were barely 100 points, so everything could happen. Last task was a combination of speed and economy tasks. The strategy was the most crucial factor.
Speed and Distance Economy With limited fuel, fly as fast as possible between SP, TP1 and TP2 points. Between SP and TP2 the total distance is 39,911 km. On TP1 we will have a cylinder of 500 m radius, after entering the cylinder competitors will continue to fly towards TP2. After TP2 fly the biggest distance possible considering the remaining fuel and the need to return to the airfield. Before takeoff competitors must declare in how many seconds they will fly the distance between SP and TP2. SP, TP1, and TP2 points will be defined at the briefing. Competitors must respect all restricted airspaces and be aware that aircrafts could come from every direction during the flight. A standard fuelling operation will be performed. Each class will have a designated amount of fuel, single seaters 8 kg, AL2 10 kg, WL2 12 kg, GL2 15 kg. A standard take-off in open window will be performed with a standard deck take-off. Landing will be performed inside the briefed airfield boundaries, on the runway. Pilots should be able to taxi 100 m with running engine before they proceed to the quarantine area after landing.
The key to winning was to think of the best strategy and precise calculations of maximum speed they can travel between control points and how much fuel will they use during the whole flight.
“After a long discussion and consideration of many scenarios we picked quite risky variant, which gave us the possibility to win the whole competition. We calculated, that the fast section will take us 920 seconds while keeping the speed of 150 km/h, and then fly away 43 km north. According to our calculations, after landing we should be left with 1L of fuel.”
Strategy picked by Dariusz Szymańczak (Pilot) and Maciej Marszałek (Navigator).
Precise and thoughtful calculations let AAT pilots achieve a set of points. Euphoria did not last long, because immediately it was time for the second part of the task.
“Stress levels were peeking. We start up the engine and we rush the start. We set our course North and flew with the wind. After a few minutes it turned out, that our Ground Speed was higher than expected. So the wind was stronger than the weather forecast declared. We achieved the last turn point before finish point couple of minutes earlier and with 2 more Liters of fuel, but we decided to stick to our plan and fly towards the airfield. Then the only thing left was to wait. We had more than 40 km to travel and only a few Liters in our Fuel tank. Every minute felt like an eternity.”
Conversation with Darek after landing.
” It turned out, that we were flying back a lot slower than we expected. We landed with 1.2L of fuel. It strengthens our thoughts, that it is worth to trust mathematics. In the long run we were just a few points off the first place, but we will take the title of Vice-Champions of Europe with satisfaction and please. Also, the experience gained on these Championships Will definitely help us in future competitions.”
Conversation with Maciej Marszałek after landing.
In the end, team Szymańczak / Marszałek got 2nd place simultaneously contributing to Poland winning the Europe Championship’s title in the group classification.
Aviation Artur Trendak