To escape in the air, to contemplate the beauty of the landscapes in any season, it is what allows us the motorglider, to fly while reasoning our impact…
A century of research and innovation has enabled humans to fly as only birds can naturally. So we had to find the necessary energy to allow the aerodynamic profile of our wings to fly.
This energy, which is the focus of current concerns, can come from various sources. Thermal engine, electric engine, each solution has its advantages and disadvantages. And trying to save it is an unavoidable concern.
Glider or plane? The motor glider...
A solution exists to fly without noise, and minimizing the externalities produced by the activity.
On the one hand, we have gliders, aircraft without engines which, once they are brought to altitude, are able to fly autonomously. Their glide, or ability to glide, being very good, they can fly several hours. They play with the wind to criss-cross the sky as long as the aerological conditions allow them to stay in the air. However, to take off, they need to be winched or towed. Dependent on a winch or a powerful tow plane, they have to wait their turn to fly away. Once in the air, they are left to their own devices with the only way to move forward is to exploit the lift.
On the other hand, there are airplanes and microlights, whose lesser finesse allows them to fly, but which cannot stay in flight for long without a motor.
A new idea is introduced. Combine the two. The “moto-gliders“ were born, or gliders with integrated take-off devices. Hybrids between gliders and airplanes, these aircraft open up new perspectives in recreational aviation. Their small engine is not aimed at performance. It is used to take off autonomously, without having to depend on a much larger aircraft, or even a winch. Once in the air, being able to put their propeller in “flag”, they glide with the finesse of a glider. Exploiting the ascents and staying in the air for hours without engine.
electric or thermal?
There are motorized gliders with internal combustion engines, which run on gasoline like those of most aircraft. These 4-stroke engines are known for their reliability and consume about 10L per hour. In summer, when conditions are optimal, the engine is only needed for about 10 minutes to extract and fly away. The rest of the flight is made without any consumption, engine off. The use of the engine is however possible if the ascents are not available, which offers an important comfort, in particular to make first flights.
Then there is the electric motor. Very popular at the moment, it allows you to take off and bring the aircraft high enough to cut the engine, and glide freely. This solution is very attractive in terms of both emissions and noise.
Gliding without a motor...
“Flying a motorglider means having the freedom to take off autonomously, and to use your engine only when strictly necessary. The pleasure of gliding combined with the freedom of flying”.
But what about the experience on board, for the passengers of these aircraft?
During a first flight, as well as during an initiation to piloting, the sensations are exceptional. Flying a motorglider is not only a way of thinking about our impact, but also of discovering the flexibility of a two-seater motorized aircraft, which takes off without waiting as soon as the conditions are right. Then, the fact of being able to cut the engine and glide like a “real glider” gives access to the immensity of the sensations of freedom, glide and silence well known in gliding.
Learn to fly a motorglider
We have a special training for the motorized glider on the airfield of Tallard, but also in Chateau-Arnoux. Otherwise it is advisable to train to fly an ultralight aircraft, or multi-axis ultralight. Indeed, most motorgliders are legally classified in this category. Although there are also certified motor gliders, also called “gliders with built-in take-off device”. Their propeller is often located in the fuselage, behind the pilot, some very successful models have a retractable propeller, located at the front of the aircraft.
A simple principle, yet so relevant! Who’s next to try this clean and discreet activity?