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Aerophysics (Curtiss-Wright) VZ-7AP « Aerial Jeep »

Jemiba

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Looking quite notional, but it's the only picture I've seen so far
of the Aerophysics contender for the flying jeep:
(from Aviation Week August 1957)
 

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Stingray

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Aerophysics Development Corporation = Santa Barbara Division of Curtiss-Wright.

Two VZ-7AP prototypes were built (s/n 58-5508 and 58-5509) with single 425shp Turbomeca Artouste IIB shaft turbine engines. They were delivered to the Army in 1958 and performed rather well during evaluation flights, as they proved very stable hovering and forward flight, but they didn't meet the altitude and speed requirements of the program, and so they were withdrawn from service in the mid-1960s.
 

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shedofdread

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Don't suppose anyone has any info on how the torque splitting was achieved? From the pics [and as far as I could see] the props look fixed pitch.

S
(loving the fact that 'quad-copters' are nothing new...)
 

Stingray

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shedofdread said:
Don't suppose anyone has any info on how the torque splitting was achieved? From the pics [and as far as I could see] the props look fixed pitch.

According to "U.S. Army Aircraft since 1947" by S. Harding, directional movement was controlled by varying the thrust of each individual propeller, with additional yaw control provided by moveable vanes fixed over the engine exhaust.

Hope that provides a clue... :-\
 

shedofdread

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Errrrr... no ;) but thanks anyway! :)

I take it back re the fixed pitch props - from a second look at the photos (btw thanks for posting) I'm pretty sure they're variable pitch. I thought that would be the easiest way to control such a craft [if driven from a central, single engine] but if a torque distribution method could be developed to be light and reliable enough, I'd be interested to see it.

S
 

Stargazer2006

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Could you try and be precise, Stingray? It's Aero-Physics, not Aerophysics, and it was called the Aerial Jeep, not the Flying Jeep!!

This forum is so well referenced in Google that whatever you post here appears a couple of hours later in Google. That's why I encourage you to be extra-careful and verify your info as much as possible! I've made a few mistakes myself in the past, and it's annoying when you realize that, even after modifying the post, Google keeps your mistakes in its cache for a while more!
 

Stingray

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Stargazer2006 said:
It's Aero-Physics, not Aerophysics

I saw it spelt that way in several other places (and Jemiba started the topic off with it) so I assumed that was the correct spelling. Sorry!
 

Stargazer2006

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Stingray™ said:
Stargazer2006 said:
It's Aero-Physics, not Aerophysics

I saw it spelt that way in several other places (and Jemiba started the topic off with it) so I assumed that was the correct spelling. Sorry!
Indeed. In fact, most online sources seem to use your spelling. However, I'm sure that's one piece of info I once checked and double-checked... I'll look into it. Meanwhile...

Like the Chrysler VZ-6 and Piasecki VZ-8, the Curtiss-Wright VZ-7 was developed in response to an Army Transportation Corps requirement for a 'flying jeep' type light VTOL utility vehicle. Curtiss-Wright's Santa Barbara Division (formerly the Aerophysics Development Corporation) was awarded an Army contract in 1957 for the development and initial flight testing of two prototype aircraft. These vehicles (serials 58-5508 and 58--5509) were delivered to the Army in mid-1958.
The VZ-7 was of exceedingly simple design, essentially consisting of a rectangular central airframe to which four vertically-mounted propellers were attached in a square pattern. The central fuselage carried the pilot's seat, flight controls, fuel and lubricant tanks, and the craft's single 425shp Turbomeca Artouste IIB shaft turbine engine. Both prototypes originally had ducted fans, though both engines were eventually modified to operate with unshrouded propellers. The VZ-7's control system was also very simple; directional movement was controlled by varying the thrust of each individual propeller, with additional yaw control provided by moveable vanes fixed over the engine exhaust.
Both VZ-7 examples performed adequately during the builder's initial flight test programme, and both did reasonably well when evaluated by the Army. The craft were capable of hovering and forward flight and proved relatively stable and easy to operate. However, the design proved consistently incapable of meeting the altitude and speed requirements specified by the Army and both examples were subsequently withdrawn from service and returned to the manufacturer in mid-1960.
Source: S.Harding "U.S.Army Aircraft since 1947", 1990
 

Stargazer2006

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Not very good quality, but that's the only three-view arrangement I've got, unfortunately.
 

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Jemiba

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Stargazer2006 said:
...most online sources seem to use your spelling.

It's just cold comfort, if I really got the spelling wrong and if we get confirmation for "Aero-Phyiscs", I'll
of course change the title of this thread at once. Nevertheless, if so, both Aviation Week and the Flight
magazine got it wrong, too, during a time, when an "online source" probably still was just a sheet of paper,
hanging on a washing line .... ;)
 

Stargazer2006

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Jemiba said:
Stargazer2006 said:
...most online sources seem to use your spelling.

It's just cold comfort, if I really got the spelling wrong and if we get confirmation for "Aero-Phyiscs", I'll
of course change the title of this thread at once. Nevertheless, if so, both Aviation Week and the Flight
magazine got it wrong, too, during a time, when an "online source" probably still was just a sheet of paper,
hanging on a washing line .... ;)
As a matter of fact, today's research seems to prove me wrong, as I haven't been able to identify a single source with the hyphenated variant!! I seem to recall finding this on an old Curtiss document, but have been unsuccessful locating this, so let's say that for now "Aerophysics" is correct and I'm wrong... Sorry Stingray!
 

hesham

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Jemiba said:
Looking quite notional, but it's the only picture I've seen so far
of the Aerophysics contender for the flying jeep:
(from Aviation Week August 1957)
In this Competition,there was a 21 designs submitted to it.

http://archive.aviationweek.com/image/spread/19570819/65/2
 
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