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|Ventus 2b being winch-launched at Lasham airfield|
|Role||15 metre-class and 18 metre-class sailplane|
Design and development
The Ventus-2a and 2b are 15 metre sailplanes. The 'a' version has a narrow fuselage and the wider fuselage version is called the 2b. Winglets are used with these models. The 18 metre span Ventus-2c was introduced in 1995 but was almost an entirely different aircraft with a different fuselage and wings, but it has the option of shorter tips with winglets to fly as a 15 metre sailplane.
From 2003 the Schempp-Hirth Discus-2 fuselage was used for all versions, which now have the designations 2ax, 2bx and 2cx. Flight tests in 1996 showed that the 15 metre version had a glide angle of 46:1 but only after considerable work on sealing gaps and by using turbulators.
The narrow fuselage Ventus-2a has been highly successful in competitions with consecutive World Championship wins from 1995 to 2003. A narrow fuselage version with an 18 metre span, the Ventus 2cxa has also been built.
Some Ventus-2c and 2cx are fitted with small Solo 2625 sustaining engines (turbos) and are designated with a T suffix, while some are self-launching with a more powerful version of the same engine and have the suffix 'M'. The 2cT climbs at up to 0.9 m/s (177 ft/min) and the 2cM at over 3 m/s (590 ft/min). Ranges for the powered versions in saw-tooth operation are 370 km (230 mi) and 840 km (520 mi) respectively. The 2cxa has been designed to take a jet engine.
Production of the 2a and 2b has reached 168 aircraft, while the 2c, 2cT, and 2CM have reached 459.
A replacement model, the Ventus 3, was shown at the Aero 2015 exhibition at Friedrichshafen on 15 April 2015. It will have an entirely new fuselage in two widths and a new 18 metre wing. Electric-starting engines and a front end electric sustainer will be available. The prototype's first flight was on 29 January 2016.
Specifications (Ventus-2cx with 15 metre wings)
- Crew: One
- Capacity: 200 kg (440 lb) water ballast
- Length: 6.81 m (22 ft 4 in)
- Wingspan: 15.00 m (49 ft 21 in)
- Height: 1.30 m (4 ft 3 in)
- Wing area: 9.7 m2 (104 ft2)
- Aspect ratio: 23.3
- Empty weight: 290 kg (640 lb)
- Gross weight: 525 kg (1,155 lb)
- Maximum speed: 285 km/h (180 mph)
- Maximum glide ratio: 46
- Rate of sink: 0.51 m/s (100 ft/min)
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