3.2.3 FUEL MEASUREMENT
Fuel will be measured by weight or volume but will be consistent for any given refuelling session. Refuelling will be in the order and in accordance with the instructions given at briefing. Failure of the aircraft to be present on time may result in penalty for the pilot.
Competitors must be able to demonstrate that their entire fuel system is empty
When this proposal was last brought to CIMA, Richard Meredith-Hardy expressed a view that this system should be tested first at national level competition. Since then it has been used in the Belgian Open 2009 and 2011, France in 2010 and 2011, and in 8 UK competitions since 2006. The UK now considers these examples to have adequately demonstrated its value.
The proposal still does not mandate the competition director to use the system, but offers him the choice, which he may wish to take for the following reasons:
- Emptying machines of all fuel is a tedious exercise that often wastes precious flying time.
- An economy task cannot be set at short notice.
- There is inconsistency in the way pilots are supervising each other's fuelling and to get away with keeping some fuel in pipes (or priming bulb) is not really seen as cheating.
- Pilots have to modify their machines with complicated fuel systems and header tanks.
- Pilots with thirsty engines not only score badly but are also denied full task participation.
- Running out of fuel and landing out is a problem with retrieve.
The new proposal addresses all of the problems given above plus it allows an optional "Fuel in proportion to bodyweight" system which has now been permanently adopted by UK competitions committee.
It was tested very successfully in the 2006 UK National Championships and was popular with Pilots and Organisers alike.
Since 2006 this system has been used in the UK championships every year and in the UK league. It has now been permanently adopted by the UK competition committee as their preferred method of fuel usage measurement.
No pilots in any of these competitions have landed out due to fuel shortage in economy tasks and the associated retrieve problems are therefore eliminated.
Economy tasks have been set at short notice and have been "bolted on" to other tasks with little disruption to the launch deck or window enabling task directors improved flexibility in task setting and task type proportioning to validate competitions.