I think I saw that Russian technique described somewhere along the line.
The technique may be incomprehensible to some PhD's because a
coherent, linear-thinking approach may fail to derive theory
supporting it. It may be a technique that uses bits of disjoint
theory and perhaps some assumptions that aren't generally supportable,
but works most of the time and/or perhaps all of the time in most
real-world cases -- one of which may be tail rotors.
I led an R&D team that developed a self-balancing washing machine some
years ago. Interesting problem because of severe cost constraints of
the whitegoods market and ill-defined boundary conditions. Example:
consumer washers are never bolted to concrete, and some set on the
flimsy floor of a doublewide. The structure was comprised of stamped
sheetmetal and some plastic, certainly not cast iron like machine
tools or tire balancing machines. There were a shitload of
resonances, and many of them weren't very predictable. In addition,
this washer went much faster than traditional washers in the spin
cycle, because it could self-balance. That reduced energy necessary
for drying. Barely-damp clothes peeled off the drum with pronouced
dimples in them.
The team used a technique using oversensing and SVD (singular value
decomposition) sometimes used in aerospace guidance & control systems.
It worked! At least a dozen patents were spawned.
Then politics and corporate infighting rendered the project
- posted 12 years ago