Tagged: aircraft

Spike S-512 might just be the world’s very first supersonic business jet

Spike S-512 supersonic aircraft

As far as the flight speed of civilian airplanes go, the Gulfstream G650 rules the roost with its 800 mph (around 1280 km/hr) velocity. However, Boston-based Spike Aerospace is looking forth to considerably outdo the Gulfstream by unveiling the world’s first supersonic business jet. Christened as the Spike S-512, the aircraft will achieve a cruising speed of Mach 1.6 (1218 mph), while its top speed will go further to Mach 1.8 (1370 mph). The exhilarating scale of velocity is accompanied by an astronomical price tag, with each aircraft coming with a cost of a whopping $60 to $80 million.

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VC200 touted to be the world’s safest helicopter inspired aircraft

VC200 volocopter

Behold the very first volocopter in the world that has the capacity to hold two people. Now, before you start working your eyebrows, a volocopter is a derivative mechanism of the helicopter brought forth by E-Volo, their creator. In fact, the German company had already crafted the planet’s first manned multicopter two years back. And, now they have made more developments to the core flying system with the successful unveiling of the VC200. One of these advancements would surely be related to the whopping 18 rotors, all of which are electrically driven. Overall, the aerodynamic design also goes by credible level of aesthetics, which is a big visual step from the earlier ‘makeshift’ scope (follow this image link) to a more refined ambit.

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Stefan Klein’s Aeromobil 2.5 emerges as a ‘working’ flying car

Stefan Klein's Aeromobil 2.5

The very term ‘flying car’ presents itself as a wondrous oxymoron. However Stefan Klein, the creator of the the above pictured Aeromobil (version 2.5) doesn’t so much bother with figures of speeches, as with his ingenious technology that makes flying cars a real possibility. He has been developing the Aeromobil prototype for the last 20 years. This is quite evident from the exquisite looks of the contrivance, accompanied by dollops of streamlined features. Of course, the credentials of the design are not just limited to its aerodynamic attributes; the Aeromobil also integrates folding wings, a propeller in the tail and an engine that also effectively drives the front wheels.

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First look and design details of Icon A5 Systems Layout Model


Icon is a name that symbolizes with high quality aircraft technology. Extending its repertoire further , Icon recently displayed Icon A5 Systems Layout Model at the EAA AirVenture 2013 in Oshkosh, Wisconsin. The aircraft still in the design stage looks far-fetched but according to the makers is going to be made available soon for a price tag of about $189,000. The latest version of Icon A5 is a small, two-seater aircraft which enables flights without hurdles. Read More…

21-year old Indian student makes drone, seeks funds to upgrade it

Drone build by Subhanjan Saha from India

A 21-year old boy, Subhanjan Saha (computer science student from Manindra Chandra College) from the city of Kolkata, India has built a drone from scratch and is now seeking help to upgrade it so that it can become one of the most sophisticated unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) in the country. The three by one meter, remote controlled drone is loaded with high definition cameras capable of 180 degree movement and while in the air can easily scan area of 10 km. To juice it up rechargeable batteries are used and can last for an average of 60 minutes in one go before again recharging for the next flight. It took Saha 4-5 years for engineering and making this UAV draped in tricolor. Although the body of this drone is made from not so durable thermocol material due to budgetary constraints but the electronic components have been imported from abroad. To have an idea of this young geek’s determination to make this drone, let me tell you that he has been saving money all these years to buy the expensive components for building one.
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OpenSky M-02J jet-powered glider could be a way to fly soon

opensky jet-powered glider by Kazhiko Hachiya

We’ve seen jet-powered gliders in a few movies including the Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind – an animated Japanese movie – but we never imagined it could be a reality someday. A man named Kazhiko Hachiya believed it was possible, and after a decade of hard work he has given us all a reason to believe flying high solo could be possible someday – so, after the jetpacks, our ancestors have yet another reason to envy our prowess to be fly like a bird. Taking leaf from the work of fiction in the Japanese movie (referred above) Hachiya has (since 2003) been testing and designing his very own M-02J jet-powered single-person glider, which is on display at the 3331 Arts Chiyoda Center in Japan, until September 16. Read More…

Festo BionicOpter – The surreal dragonfly drone flies just like the real thing

Festo BionicOpter mechanical dragonfly

In the quest to mimic God’s code we humans have been constantly trying to emulate the grand design by making our own version of mechanical creations that amaze us all. The latest in the line of many bionic creations is this BionicOpter (developed as a part of Bionic Learning Network) by Festo, that is a mechanical dragonfly mimicking the flight behavior of a dragonfly courtesy the energy efficient light weight mechanical components, sensors, open & closed loop systems and communication controls. The thrust and frequency of four flapping and twisting wings can be controlled individually for a very precise flight path assisted by advanced kinematics that can be controlled via a smartphone. With a wingspan of 70 cm and overall body length of 48 cm, BionicOpter UAV weighs only 175 grams, and the wings are made from carbon fiber frame and thin foil covering while the body structure is made from flexible polyamide and terpolymer.

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PUMA-AE unmanned aerial vehicle for disaster relief operations

PUMA-AE unmanned aerial vehicle for disaster relief operations

We have seen many UAVs in the past like PHANTOM, SenseFly and much more recent AeroDrone; and this unmanned aerial vehicle has its own reason for being developed, to be precise, disaster relief operations. To assess the extremity of disaster in areas where relief supplies are needed, National Institute of Information and Communications Technology (NICT) has developed an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) called PUMA-AE. Manufactured by Aero Instrument Byron USA, this unmanned aircraft weighs only 5.9kg and has a wingspan of 2.8 meters. With the capability of carrying a payload of around 0.5kg, PUMA-AE drone can be equipped with a camera so as to bring back important video or image feed of the disaster struck areas. Having a wind speed of 25 knots, maximum flight altitude of 5000m, the UAV can attain a flight time of 2-4 hours and a flight distance of 15kms in one go. The UAV works on radio relay system which communicates with the affected area and the disaster relief point.
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3D printed unmanned airplane built by engineering students

3D printed unmanned aircraft that is built using 3D printing technology initiated because of the development of a plastic turbofan engine by University of Virginia engineering students’ sounds very interesting. As a part of the Mitre Corporation’s (McLean-based defense contractor) plan to build an unmanned aerial vehicle two interns; Steven Easter, his brother and lab partner Jonathan Turman from the University of Virginia applied for this interesting project. They got help from Professor David Sheffler (U.Va. Engineering School alumnus and aerospace engineering veteran with 20 years of experience) in building the aircraft having 6.5 foot wingspan and other parts made completely from 3D printed parts in layers of plastic. According to Sheffler to make a turbofan engine to scale using traditional manufacturing methods would have cost around $2,50,000 but with 3D printing it cost only $2000.
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Freighter Bird modern day Zeppelin will soar the sky’s in near future

A team of ten students from the School of Industrial and Aeronautical Engineering of Terrassa (ETSEIAT) of the Technical University of Catalonia (UPC) have designed a new age airship called Freighter Bird that can carry 200 tons of load without using any fossil fuel. This modern day Zeppelin has immense energy saving credentials as it reduces CO2 emissions and on top of that has minimal noise for an environmentally friendly ride. Freighter Bird measuring 360 meters long, 40 meters tall and weighing 400 tons with a top speed of 130 km/h would save an estimated half a million euros annually.
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