Which glide ratio needs to be achieved for glider to be considered as a sailplane?

Update:

Actually i would like to know if the Pipistrel Taurus still can be considered as a sailplane if its best glide ratio is actually below 30 despite in theory it was supposed to be 1:41

Thank you.

Update 2:

edit:

Thank you very much gentlemen.

2 Answers

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  • 1 month ago
    Favourite answer

    There is no such official distinction. A widely accepted definition is that a sailplane is a glider designed to fly efficiently and GAIN ALTITUDE from natural forces, such as thermals and ridge lift. Therefore, given sufficient lift, even a low-performance glider can meet the definition of a sailplane. German gliders of the 1920's certainly can be called sailplanes and they had glide ratios in the range of 18:1 to 22:1, allowing them to soar for extended periods in 20 mph wind blowing accross the Rhone mountains. 

  • rick
    Lv 7
    1 month ago

    It isn't glide ratio or even sink rate. If it can gain altitude from launch altitude it can be considered a "sailplane". If all it can do is descend it's a glider.

    Just like Z B already told you

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