SSSA Second Annual Conference and AGM - Orient 2019

By Bennie Henning

On Saturday and Sunday, the 27th and 28th of July 2019, the Soaring Society of South Africa (SSSA) Second Annual Conference and AGM was held at the Orient Airfield, or better known as the Magaliesberg Gliding Club northwest of Krugersdorp.

The Saturday afternoon started off with workshops after lunch. I attended the workshop on arrival at 2pm regarding simple repairs to composite components / parts of modern gliders. This was presented by Attie Jonker from Jonker Sailplanes in Potchefstroom. Detailed theoretical background on composite materials was presented and samples of composite parts that were tested to the designed safety factor where it failed, were shown. These wing loading parts are considerably heavy as it has to handle instantaneous weight capacities of up to 9 tons in compression of 400 MPa when operating under extreme gravity-loaded dynamic conditions.

Attie Jonker - Simple composite repairs.

The following workshops that were presented moved to the club house from the hangar for logistical purposes. First main talk presentation was also presented by Attie Jonker from Jonker Sailplanes about test flying and development of the JS2 self-sustained glider. Pictures from the presented slides (Copyright Jonker Sailplanes) are shown next to illustrate the concept of complete computer modelling of every aspect of a modern competition glider before being actually built in the factory. The final design is scheduled to be frozen of the JS2 is by the 1st of August 2019. Test flight of the first prototype is penned down for the end of the year. Tight schedule; but done successfully before with the JS3 built in 2016 and test flown in December 2016 before taking part in an international sail plane competition overseas in Australia in January 2017.

Attie Jonker - Test Flying and the JS2.

Sailplane Aerodynamics - Conventional Analysis Methods.

Computational Fluid Dynamics - Numerical mesh / Tetrahedral finite volume cells for the external aerodynamic region.

Computational Fluid Dynamics - Calibration of transition turbulence numerical models (Large Eddy Simulation).

Computational Fluid Dynamics - Numerical versus Actual as benchmarking tool.

Computational Fluid Dynamics - Streamlines around the fuselage and rudder with turbulence kinetic energy surface contours.

JS2 Self-sustainer Glider - CAD representation in upright motor position.

Different main talks were presented over the two days with interesting information being shared by experienced glider pilots from South Africa. As an aviation photographer, this also gave me tremendous insight into the world of gliding.

John Coutts - Golden rules for Soaring.

Post Conference - Sunset over Orient Airfield after Day 1.

Touring Motorised Glider - Ready for Departure - Day 2.

Touring Motorised Glider - Stemme with hidden propellor - Day 2.

Doc Holiday - Importance of Oxygen at High Altitude Levels.

Oscar Goudriaan - Final Glide; how to do it successfully.

John Coutts - Weather understanding; how technology can help.

John Coutts - Weather understanding; how technology can help / Skysight software / Italy as an example.

The second annual conference was a roaring success with all gliding clubs represented. Presentations and workshops led to good discussions among all that attended and valuable information was exchanged among glider pilots during these sessions. Looking forward to the 2020 SSSA Annual Conference and AGM.

The next SSSA event will be the South African National Gliding Championships will take place at the Potchefstroom Airfield from 5 to 12 October 2019 ( For more information regarding this SSSA event, contact Carol Clifford:

Events 2019

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