As a basis for this question, take the following catapult glider:
This model has low aspect ratio wings, a thick wing section and a relatively wide fuselage, however the surface of the glider is smooth. Is this an optimum design for distance or is there a better design possible?
How will the following parameters affect how well the glider fulfils its requirements?
- Wing area
- Wing planform
- Fuselage width
- Surface roughness
- Aspect ratio
(covered here How does chord length affect wing design?)
At least what areas should a designer experiment with in order to achieve long flights?