Schempp-Hirth Nimbus

Schempp-Hirth Nimbus is a designed by Klaus Holighaus glider. Manufacturers Schempp-Hirth in Kirchheim ( Teck ).

Except for the Mini - Nimbus Nimbus have all types of more than 20 m span, so they fly in the open class. The Mini - Nimbus, however, flies in the racing class.



Holighaus used for the prototype of the Nimbus the hull of the Open Class Cirrus and a similar tail, but a completely new, three-piece wing with 22 meters span. The prototype first flew in 1969. Only one aircraft of this type was built.

The effect of the rudder in this plane was not sufficient. Even if the pilot had full aileron and rudder, it flew straight for a few seconds before it suddenly fell into a steep curve. Spoilers did not exist, so it was extremely difficult to land the plane. It was damaged several times. However, the aircraft for its time offered excellent gliding performance, with a best glide ratio of 1:51 at 90 km / h and a minimum sink rate of only 0.43 m / s

George Moffat (USA) flew the Nimbus 1970 to the World Cup in Marfa, Texas. Despite major handling problems he was able to win the first place.

Nimbus -2

The Nimbus -2 first flew in April 1971. It was built almost the entire 1970s through and based roughly on the first halo. The Nimbus -2 was ultimately a totally new glider with many improvements. The wing was shortened to 20.3 meters and four-piece built to facilitate development and transport. He also got Schempp- Hirth airbrakes on top of the wing.

The first 132 Nimbus -2 had a T-tail with the pendulum elevator of the Standard Cirrus. The later Nimbus -2b were given a T- tail with elevator. The Nimbus 2c got a new, combined with the flaps airbrake system, and there were of this series have a lighter version (recognizable by the black instead of red "C" in the fuselage lettering) with wing spar caps made ​​of carbon fiber and a higher maximum takeoff weight. By 1979, more than 230 Nimbus -2, -2b and - 2c were built. A heavily modified single piece with 23.5 m span was called Nimbus - 2CS and served the testing of the concept for the successor Nimbus - third This unique piece is still (as of August 2012) approved and currently based in the UK. As a motor glider version of the Nimbus -2M was developed, this was a fold-out engine ( Hirth engine 50 hp) and was self bootable.

The Nimbus -2 was successful in competition. Twice the World Cup was won in the open class, several records were flown. BL Drake, Don Speight and SH Georgeson flew in 1978 in New Zealand world record in the target flight as well as in the open road with 1254 km.

Mini - Nimbus

The Mini - Nimbus is a high performance glider for the 15 -meter class / race class by the manufacturer Schempp-Hirth in Kirchheim ( Teck ). Klaus Holighaus in this period were two glider Manufacturer: Schempp- Hirth and glass wings. So he could he developed wings for both the Mini - Nimbus how to use 303 Mosquito also for glass wings. The body was taken over by Schempp- Hirth Cirrus and modified. The first flight was in September 1976 while the series production began in 1977. The Mini - Nimbus HS -7 ( Holighaus/Schempp-7 ) consists entirely of GRP, while partly the Mini - Nimbus C carbon fiber was installed in the wings and tailplane, which made him easier. Offered he was with pendulum tail and later with steamed tail. With the glide ratio of 42:1 flown at 105 km / h Mini - Nimbus is about on par with other race -class aircraft of its time, or slightly behind the bit "faster" ASW - 20th At the lowest possible load be Glide is still 41:1. The minimum sink rate is 0.57 m / s at 80 km / h The maximum speed is 250 km / h; the maneuvering speed is 200 km / h In addition, he is certified for aerobatics ( loop, turn, etc.). The surface stress can (eg by water ballast in the wings ) 31-46 kg / m² can be varied. The Mini - Nimbus index is 108 He has trailing-edge flap rotation (a combination of spoilers and lowered flaps ), which allow a steep approach, which can be helpful in field landings. For normal approaches, the two spoiler can also be lower without the flaps extend. With flaps lowered to ask yourself these after retracting the spoiler automatically return to the previously set camber. The elevator trim is combined with the flaps so the pilot only needs to trim past the trim lever once in flight the plane - now on the aircraft trims automatically with a positive curvature tail-heavy and top-heavy with a negative curvature. In the flight, the Mini - Nimbus enjoys a superb maneuverability and good circuit behavior in thermals. With the pendulum tail and the trailing edge flap rotation but the aircraft is relatively demanding, especially in combination with its comparatively low hull length, since it reacts extremely sensitively on the tailplane control inputs. Like all aircraft with undamped pendulum tail, it does not tend to self-stabilization in a release the stick. During the landing approach is to be noted that a sudden retraction of the trailing edge flap rotation causes a strong sag, which is why the touchdown should be possible, corrected only by the angle of attack, but not through the retraction of the flaps here. It is positive that hardly a noticeable speed increase is caused by additional pressures at full flaps drawn, so not to be expected with a too rapid approach and also comparatively steep approaches ( " Sarajevo Approach" ) succeed. From this type of aircraft a total of 159 pieces were built until its production was discontinued in favor of emerging from his successor model Schempp-Hirth Ventus.

Nimbus -3

The Nimbus -3 was mostly built of carbon fiber and got a new wing profile. The four-part wing had 22.9 m span, which were extended by for proper connection to 24.5 m, and later even to 25.5 m. The outer wings are slightly modified Ventus- wing. At the wing tip greed spoilers are attached that support the rudder with large aileron deflections. First flight was on 21 February 1981 the designer Dipl. -Ing. Klaus Holighaus. The Nimbus -3T had a fold-out sustainer.

Nimbus -3 reached the top three spots on the 1981 World Championship, but with only twelve participants. 1983, Nimbus -3 on the first six places, and in 1985 flew the winner Nimbus - third

The Nimbus - 3D is the two-seater version. The first flight was in May 1986. The wings are slightly swept back here forward. There was a self- starter version ( Nimbus - 3DM ) and a version with a sustainer ( Nimbus 3DT ). The Nimbus 3D was initially constructed with 24.6 m span. For the 3D and the 3DT there span extensions to 25.6 m.

The Nimbus 3DM version was produced as a self-launching, two-seater motor glider with Rotax 2- stroke engine 60 hp, with a span of 24.6 m.

Nimbus -4

The Nimbus 4 (first flight 1990) is the current model and was derived from the Nimbus -3. The range grew to 26.4 meters, stretching to 38.8. The hull is longer and has a larger rudder. The Nimbus is available in the single seater version with Turbo Engine ( 4T) and a self- starter ( 4M ). With the standard tank of 26 liters " saw-tooth" flights over 450 km are possible (or 750 km when using an additional wing tanks ). However, the fuselage tank alone is already sufficient to perform three to four own -offs on each 1000 m altitude. An integrated in the fuselage refueling system allows effortless filling of the installed tanks. The engine can remove, replace, and with little effort and allows the NIMBUS -4M at any time with converted drive (and therefore approximately 55 kg less weight) to fly. The gliding index is 124

There is also a two-seater version of Nimbus -4D as well as versions with Turbo ( 4T or 4DT ) or self- starter ( 4DM ).

Nimbus -4D

The Nimbus -4D is a product manufactured in fiber-reinforced plastic construction and two-seater glider with a wingspan of 26.5 m ( 39.1 stretching ), the largest ever made ​​by Schempp -Hirth in series model.

With its best glide ratio ~ 60 and with excellent slow flight and climb performance is the Nimbus 4D comparable single-seaters in nothing, but has significantly improved flight characteristics. Control coordination and agility give the impression of a much smaller two-seater. A result which could be achieved only by the outstanding aerodynamic wing design, combined with a sophisticated control kinematics.