Project Mars: Loads

Loads matter

Going to the North Pole or up Mount Everest you think lots about load. How much in your sled and backpack; how much snow under your feet. Expedition peers discuss it all the time, more even than weather and food. A heavy load makes your life miserable and can alone slow you down to the point of failure.

In aeronautics load matters just as much but comes in different flavors: the forces of acceleration, air resistance, thermal effects and what else aspiring to shred you to pieces before you can say Mars.

In the polar world, a well designed sled will balance out uneven surfaces and resist friction; equally aerobatic airplanes are especially good at tolerating aerodynamic load factors.

Which brings us to the point of this short story, and just one of these tales during expedition preps:

Check out this insane video of an aerobatic plane from the Sukhoi Su-26 family, demonstrating just how tough aerodynamic load factors can be…

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