As explained in our newsletter, the tail (empennage) of UR-1, the first fully electric race plane, has been completed and it has also been integrated with a control surface.
In general, the empennage is placed in the rear of the plane. Its function is to provide stability during flight by managing lift, pitch and yaw.
There are a lot of different aircraft tails, their names usually reflect the shape of the tail itself, for example: Y-Tail, T-Tail, X-Tail, H-Tail, etc...
So, why did we choose the V-Tail for UR-1, our race plane?
The V-Tail of UR-1 consists of two sides set at 46° to the horizontal angles. One of the main characteristics of its shape is that a ruddervator (as it is known in jargon) performs as both rudder and elevator. This component basically consists of a control surface arranged on both the external edges of the V-Tail diagonal lines. The reason why we have chosen to adopt this solution is to make our planes faster.
Why does the V-Tail make our aircraft faster?
While normally the tail includes a vertical stabilizer (fin) and two horizontal ones (tailplanes), a rudder, the elevators and the last part of the fuselage connected with the tail (as it is evident in Cruciform, the T-Tail and the H-Tail aircraft), the absence of a third component in the “V shape” has the advantage of reducing the number of the surfaces conjuncted to the fuselage. As a result, it generates less interference trail compared to an aircraft with a T-Tail or an H-Tail at high speed. This effect will allow our plane to go faster.
So as UR-1 is a race plane, this design option can offer us the opportunity to demonstrate that an electric aircraft can also be fast, not only green, while racing in the Air Race E championship.