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Airbus Helicopters flies Bluecopter demonstrator

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Airbus Helicopters flies Bluecopter demonstrator

Old 13th Jul 2015, 16:36
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Two points:

1. "singling up" in the two engine helicopters I flew was an emergency procedure. The problems with restart may have been overcome in the last 30 years, so my data point on the fatal mishap where a crew singled up, and when the operating engine gave up and the crew didn't successfully restart ... might be more due to old tech. (The root issue is that the engine still wind mills while flying even if shut off ...)

2. Regarding the A400M recent mishap, one hopes that, as I said, the appropriate lessons will be learned and such things removed from cause/risk factors in other products the company presents for sale.

One hopes.
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Old 5th Jun 2016, 15:25
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I went to ILA Berlin this week so here are my photos of the Bluecopter,

cheers















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Old 12th Jun 2016, 13:46
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Thank you Chopper 2004. Always fascinating to see the 135 prototype.
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Old 12th Jun 2016, 15:58
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Why the wavy Fenestron blade technology did not make it to the H160?


Anybody has input on the value of the rotor head being fully profiled?
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Old 12th Jun 2016, 20:09
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I heard a conference where two AH test pilots presented the Bluecopter project.
They said the effect of the rotor head fairing was less than expected and does not at all justify the maintenance headaches it creates.
All the other aerodynamical changes seem to lead to much more efficient flight resulting in significantly higher cruise speed compared to the stock 135.

They claimed that it is the quietest helicopter in the world, rated at 91db during approach (compared to 94db on MD Explorer, IIRC). Largely attributed to the main blades and redesigned fenestron.

Apparently the project is still running and they are looking into single engined cruise flight.
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Old 12th Jun 2016, 21:00
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I like the idea of the built in parachute.
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Old 13th Jun 2016, 06:31
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So that's what the rotor head fairing does, hide the explosive parachute....
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Old 13th Jun 2016, 14:52
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There's nothing to say that they can't MOD that wavy fenestron blades into the H160 at a later stage, as an improvement kit.
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Old 13th Jun 2016, 22:42
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"I heard a conference where two AH test pilots presented the Bluecopter project.
They said the effect of the rotor head fairing was less than expected and does not at all justify the maintenance headaches it creates."

Kawasaki\ Hughes did a 500 with the same idea a machine is in a Japanese museum with it on
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Old 19th Jun 2016, 08:30
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The AH Bluecopter rotor hub is bearingless, so how does the fairing create a "maintenance headache"?
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Old 19th Jun 2016, 11:05
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Well, I'm not familiar with the type but I'll take a wild guess that even a bearingless head needs to be inspected from time to time, presumably even during preflight. Also note that while the blades are bearingless, the flight controls are not.

On the other hand the fairing itself probably requires maintenance. They said it was rather complex to adjust the gap below the head fairing. If this is not done properly, the aerodynamical effect might even be negative compared to no fairing at all...
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Old 19th Jun 2016, 13:01
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The picture shows what looks to me like a hinged vertical stab, at least the upper 2/3's of it. Are there flight control linkages to what looks like a rudder? It's easy to see the gap at the bottom, but harder for me to make out a gap at the top.
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Old 19th Jun 2016, 21:02
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Rudder

Originally Posted by Lonewolf_50 View Post
The picture shows what looks to me like a hinged vertical stab, at least the upper 2/3's of it. Are there flight control linkages to what looks like a rudder? It's easy to see the gap at the bottom, but harder for me to make out a gap at the top.
Yes definitely a rudder.
But what are those 3 sensors taped with white tape onto the stabiliser?
To difficult to remove for the airshow?

Cheers SLB
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Old 20th Jun 2016, 14:14
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A presentation titled "Flight Test of the Bluecopter Demonstrator" is included on the schedule for the Society of Experimental Test Pilots' 60th Annual Symposium & Banquet in Anaheim in September.

"Transport Category Performance Testing of the AW609 Civil Tiltrotor" is also on the schedule, as is "MV-22B Osprey Shipboard Rolling Takeoff and Landing."

I/C
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Old 20th Jun 2016, 16:06
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I thought Bell had considered the "Shut One Down" concept in one of their Light Twins?

How did that turn out?

Of course Old Hands remember the Wessex with two Gnomes....just like the Single Engine Version with the same Engine.

Did commercial operators ever cruise on just One in the Twin Engine Wessex?

I would think AH would be concentrating on a more reliable MGB for its big aircraft and a much less complex fuel system for its light aircraft.

As to the claim of the "Quietest Helicopter in the World"......perhaps currently but not the quietest I bet.

http://www.airspacemag.com/military-...960500/?no-ist
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Old 21st Jun 2016, 07:42
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The real benefit from single engine operation of a twin is the reduction in fuel consumption during cruise. Turboshaft engines give best fuel efficiency when operated at max load, which is not practical with two engines operating at cruise flight conditions.
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Old 21st Jun 2016, 12:50
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So why have two engines to begin with?

IFR? We have single engine airplanes flying IFR/IMC everyday in this country...some doing Public Transport (Cessna 208 Caravans for example).
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Old 21st Jun 2016, 13:37
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Originally Posted by SASless View Post

Of course Old Hands remember the Wessex with two Gnomes....just like the Single Engine Version with the same Engine.

Did commercial operators ever cruise on just One in the Twin Engine Wessex?
The single engine Wessex (the HAS 1, HAS 3 & HAS31) were powered by the Napier Gazelle turbine, not the Gnome.

& no, the Wessex 60 wasn't cruised on one. Not in Bristow, anyway.
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Old 21st Jun 2016, 13:43
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Previous threads on the single engine cruise topic:

Ferry flight - single engine debate
Single engine cruise for twins

I/C
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Old 21st Jun 2016, 17:46
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Going back to the rotor head fairing, I seem to remember in Ray Prouty's book, his recurring argument that thee rotor head aerodynamics is miserable.


was it the amount of induced flow going through it in the center ...
I ashamed to say I have to read the book again.


anybody has a better analysis on that subject?
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