DARPA Funding Gyrodyne Heliplane R&D

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GyroLifter Concept(click to view full) Small business qualifier Groen Brothers Aviation (GBA) in Salt Lake City, UT are well known for their advocacy of and experience with gyrodyne technology. Gyrodynes use tip-acceleration to spin rotors for vertical or USTOL (Ultra-Short Take Off and Landing) takeoff and initial flight, then switch to conventional wings and propellers and place the heliblades in autorotation. Hovering capability is limited with gyrodyne designs, but vertical landing is achieved through this autorotation and works even without power. GBA participated in but lost a bid for a Joint Heavy Lift concept design contract; fortunately for GBA, they have another DARPA “heliplane” contract. They were recently awarded a $3 million increment of their $6.4 Phase One award, which provides for preliminary design and key technology demonstrations. Groen Bros. has now issued additional informaton with regard to this contract and its team, including a somewhat surprising focus for their efforts. GBA Hawk 4(click to view full) The aircraft will be “a proof of concept high speed, long range, vertical takeoff and landing (VTOL) aircraft designed for use in Combat Search and Rescue (CSAR) roles.” GBA claims that use of powered rotors for short-term hovering/takeoff and main engines for forward […]

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