Member "limakilocharlie" ( https://steemit.com/@limakilocharlie ) asked me how sailplanes are launched into the air.
There are several ways to launch a glider. One of the the most common is to use a tow plane. A tow plane is usually an airplane that was originally used for agricultural spraying. You have probably seen them before.
Oh, and in case you wonder, our tow pilots don't spray chemtrails. We...uhmmm..we just don't do that.... we have specific, "government approved" jets, and pilots, for the sole purpose of spraying our happy soapy spray, under the guise of transporting human beings muuhahaha!.. aanyway where was I?
Oh yeah, tow planes! These planes are modified to tow sailplanes by means of using a long heavy duty rope. The rope is attached to a hook release system on the empennage of the aircraft (the tail section of an airplane). After take off, the tow plane take us to desired altitude (usually 2000 feet or higher) although sometimes we release earlier when we find a good thermal.
Before take off we have good communication with our tow pilot, so he or she, knows what our intentions for the purposed flight are. You may wonder what our conversations go like, and I'll give you a sample shortly. Glider pilots talk a LOT of sophisticated terminology before take off.
Usually our conversation goes something like this:
Tow pilot: "So, where y'all want to go?"
Glider pilot: "You see that cloud over yonder? -No? Not the one that's broken and looks like a cow, but the one after!"
Tow pilot: "Oh yeah...,I see it. You want to go 2500?
Glider pilot: "Yeaah, something like that"
And just like that they jump in their aircraft, and take off!
In all seriousness, we keep communicating with the tow pilot on radio as well as using the sailplane's motion in flight which we can use to dictate where we want to go. I may this in another post.
Here's a short video I shot for you all.