US aerospace company Bell Textron presented several design concepts for a new class of vertical take-off and landing aircraft for military use that, unlike traditional converted aircraft, will be able to fly at over 740 kilometers per hour.
This ability to reach such a high cruising speed allowed the developers to add two acronyms (HS, ‘High Speed’) to the acronym used to denote this type of aircraft, VTOL.
At the same time, new technology maintains the maneuverability of a low-speed helicopter, including the ability to hover. The designs presented incorporate the low power down airflow option and an adaptability that will allow planes to perform a variety of missions, according to the specialized web Airforce Technology.
Although the three concepts revealed are very similar, their gross masses vary between 1.8 and 45 tonnes. The company did not specify the possible range or maximum flight height of the aircraft and, when it comes to its engines, only indicated that it would take advantage of “emerging propulsion technologies.” In all of the designs, the designers placed what appear to be turboprop engines on the wing tips.
“Bell’s HSVTOL technology is a radical change in helicopter capabilitiesSaid Bell Textron vice president of innovation Jason Hurst, who said the new design reduced the risks associated with this class of aircraft.
Bell has been developing vertical take-off and landing technology for at least 85 years and hopes its new concept will serve “the next generation of fighters” in modern military missions.
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