ONR's Flexrotor UAV Program Heads to Next Phase
May 1, 2012 11:58 AM
comment(s) - last by
Testing in high winds is the next step
The Office of Naval Research (ONR) Flexrotor program is developing a UAV that is part helicopter and part airplane. This UAV differ significantly from the design of traditional aircraft, and takes cues from the
, which takes off like a helicopter and has tilting rotors the transition for forward flight. This is much different from the
, which takes off and lands a traditional airplane.
The Flexrotor prototype entered the next development phase as of April 30.
This phase of the project will see Aerovel Corporation advance the capabilities of the UAV with an upgraded propulsion system giving it the ability to transfer from vertical cruising flight and to land under crosswinds and high winds. The first major milestone for the UAV was achieved in August of 2011 when the aircraft first transitioned from horizontal to vertical flight and then back again.
"With Flexrotor, the two biggest benefits to Sailors and Marines would be the ability to do extended maritime surveillance from a ship, and to do so with a small footprint," said John Kinzer, ONR program officer for Air Vehicle Technology.
The flight control system of the UAV is incredibly complex to allow for both vertical takeoff and horizontal cruising flight. The propeller has to be large enough to support hovering capabilities and small enough to be efficient in forward flight. The latest phase of flight-testing will have the aircraft testing in windy conditions and gradually increasing the operational envelope of the prototype.
The program is also being sponsored by the Naval Air Warfare Center Aircraft Division, which is working to develop a servicing capability for the UAV. Aerovel is creating an automatic servicing platform that would service launch and landing pad along with acting as the aircraft maintenance bay. Automated maintenance also allows the aircraft to be used remotely for surveillance or personnel were around for maintenance such as refueling.
"[The special ops personnel] like the idea of not exposing where they are when they need to launch and recover one," Kinzer said. "They could put it on a mountaintop somewhere and just leave it to do surveillance."
Office of Naval Research
This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled
5/1/2012 6:11:41 PM
"This UAV differ significantly from the design of traditional aircraft, and takes cues from the V-22 Osprey"
Yes, not exactly a tailsitter either, but much closer than V-22.
5/2/2012 5:55:06 AM
I agree, the V22 uses rotating engines while this just rotates the entire plane.
On the other hand, dailytech doesn't have a tailsitter article they can link to now do they...
"DailyTech is the best kept secret on the Internet." -- Larry Barber
Demand Grows for U.S. Military UAV Operators, Monetary Incentives Plentiful
April 23, 2012, 7:45 AM
U.S. Marine Corps. to Send Tilt-rotor V-22 Osprey to Iraq
April 16, 2007, 8:32 AM
SpaceX Falcon 9's Seventh Supply Mission to ISS Ends w/ Fiery Stage 1 Explosion
June 28, 2015, 1:10 PM
Cool Science Video: Glowing Millipede Prowls the Nevada Desert
May 18, 2015, 12:00 PM
Newly Discovered Costa Rican Glass Frog is Kermit's Doppelgänger
April 22, 2015, 11:26 AM
Researchers Hope to Find "Exotic" Lifeforms Inside Crater of Dinosaur Killing Meteor
April 14, 2015, 8:47 PM
Mathematician's Sociological Formulation May Explain the "Hipster Paradox"
April 14, 2015, 1:13 PM
Cool Science Video: This is What a McDonald's Burger Looks Like in Your Stomach
April 7, 2015, 1:43 PM
Most Popular Articles
As iPad Sales Wane and Watch Flops, iPhone Saves Apple's Profit With Its Heroics
July 22, 2015, 6:13 PM
Editorial: Reddit Allows Itself to be Hijacked as a Hate Platform For Racist Bigots
July 21, 2015, 6:32 PM
Microsoft July 29 Windows 10 Launch: Freebies, Rollout, and What's Next
July 21, 2015, 2:40 PM
Quick Note: Apple Watch to Get Brick and Mortar Boost From Best Buy
July 27, 2015, 3:00 PM
Mozilla and Facebook to Adobe: It's Time to Kill Flash
July 20, 2015, 6:30 PM
Latest Blog Posts
Sceptre Airs 27", 120 Hz. 1080p Monitor/HDTV w/ 5 ms Response Time for $220
Dec 3, 2014, 10:32 PM
Costco Gives Employees Thanksgiving Off; Wal-Mart Leads "Black Thursday" Charge
Oct 29, 2014, 9:57 PM
"Bear Selfies" Fad Could Turn Deadly, Warn Nevada Wildlife Officials
Oct 28, 2014, 12:00 PM
The Surface Mini That Was Never Released Gets "Hands On" Treatment
Sep 26, 2014, 8:22 AM
ISIS Imposes Ban on Teaching Evolution in Iraq
Sep 17, 2014, 5:22 PM
More Blog Posts
Copyright 2015 DailyTech LLC. -
Terms, Conditions & Privacy Information