Before we started the actual development of the BION, we talked to many commercial and recreational tandem pilots. The group of professionals mentioned an easy take-off behavior and maximum longivety as the most important properties of an tandem glider. The recreational pilots were mainly interested in a smooth handling, a high safety-level and a pleasant performance.
It took us about one year to develop a tandem glider, which united all those properties to our satisfaction.
The design of the BION is characterized by a rather low aspect ratio, which leads to a very gentle collapse- and launch behavior. The short line length improves the launch behavior even more and also leads to a well balanced handling characteristic.
To ensure, that all those properties can be enjoyed for a long time, the BION doesn’t only have a very strong line setup, but we also chose a canopy design with many suspension points, to keep the load and the deformation of the ribs low.
The BION stands out for its very steady and reliable launch behavior. Due to the short lines, the BION doesn’t tend to „dive“ after take off.
When airborne, the pilot will notice the smooth and agile handling characteristics of the BION. Even with a low wing loading, the glider will precisely follow the pilots steering inputs. The new trimmer system allows increasing the speed by about 10km/h. The high stability and the comfortable amount of damping stay the same.
This combination of well balanced handling behavior and high stability allows enjoying long thermal flights without tiring the pilot.
The very comfortable behavior continues at the landing: The right timing for flaring is easy to find and the low minimum speed allows a smooth landing.
From the beginning of the development process it was obvious, that the design of the BION offers a big safety potential in almost every flight attitude. So it was rather easy to stay within the limits fort he EN B certification. The high safety level enabled to get the certification for a very big weight range.
The BION can be legally flown from 115 to 230kg! So pilots don't have to worry any longer, if a passanger might be too light or too heavy.
In best tradition of Nova, the BION offers a very good glide ratio. Due to the high stability the glide performance can be comfortably used also in rough conditions. When thermalling, the smooth handling makes it easy to climb efficiently. Even with a high wing loading, the BION doesn’t tend to „dive“ in sharp turns.
We have also thought about a way to comfortably reduce the glide ratio: The BION has a fixation to block the outer A-lines to perform „Big-Ears“ for a long time without effort.
Changes and new features compared to the JAMBOO:
- Less aspect ratio: For easy take-off and handling and for a high safety level
- Shorter lines: For better take-off and for an improved turning behavior
- Split A-risers with a magnet fixation and a fixation to hold „Big Ears“
- Dirt holes on the stabilo
- New position and fixation of the brake pulley for better ergonomics
- Vector band at the cell openings for increased stability
- New carbon spreader bar for maximum strength and low weight