Alexander Lippisch's weird designs for Collins

Stargazer2006

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If there is one word that really can't apply to Alexander M. Lippisch at any point in his long-enduring and all-the-way fascinating career, it certainly is "conventional." Whether under the Luftwaffe's auspices, in post-war America or back in Germany later in his life, Lippisch's designs were everything but conventional.

Yet it seems that the designs he developed while working for the Collins Radio Company (an unlikely player in the 1950s aerospace scene) were especially weird, sometimes corny, even wacky...

I have gone through the various patents that were granted to Collins for Lippisch's designs and tried to extract the essence of each set of plans into single-image downloads. I will also give the full link to the complete patent for each of them.

Most famous, most practical and most copied of all of Lippisch's Collins designs was the X-112, the only one that actually got built and flown. We've already got a topic on this forum about the designs that it has inspired up to this day: http://www.secretprojects.co.uk/forum/index.php/topic,4913.0

Original patent here, as GROUND EFFECTS UTILIZING AND TRANSITION AIRCRAFT: http://www.google.com/patents/US3190582
 

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Stargazer2006

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Be warned: we are now entering a world of ever weirder designs. This one, simply entitled WINGLESS AIRCRAFT, looks more like a sock (in my son's own words) than an aircraft per se...

Original patent online: http://www.google.com/patents/US2828929
 

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Stargazer2006

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The design called FLUID PROPELLED AND SUSTAINED AIRCRAFT (note inversion of adjectives from previous entry) was basically a big flying tunnel transport using five lift-fans for VTOL capability and a turbine in the rear for forward propulsion. How lateral motion could be achieved in unclear...

Original patent: http://www.google.com/patents/US2734699
 

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Stargazer2006

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Can it get any weirder than this second WINGLESS AIRCRAFT?? Wonder what's more scary: that someone can come up with such a weird-looking device, or that a company was willing to finance the project and perhaps even build it at some point!?

Original patent: http://www.google.com/patents/USD178410
 

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Stargazer2006

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The other pretty well-known Lippisch design for Aerodyne (one which in fact almost got flown) was his first Aerodyne, here being another FLUID SUSTAINED AND FLUID PROPELLED AIRCRAFT. I'm also enclosing pics of the test articles and some CGI found on the web.

Original patent: http://www.google.com/patents/US2918230
 

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Stargazer2006

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Lippisch's Aerodyne concept was envisaged for a number of uses, both civilian and military. Here is the AERODYNE WITH EXTERNAL FLOW patent for a passenger transport version. Of course you'd have first to convince potential travellers that flying in a plane without wings is safe...

Original patent: http://www.google.com/patents/US2918233
 

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Stargazer2006

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Now face it: if such an aircraft project as this FLUID SUSTAINED AIRCRAFT had been conceived in anyone else's mind, you would seriously doubt its chances at flying... But coming from the guy who invented the delta jet and widely contributed to its development, well... it probably would have flown, if anyone had been crazy enough to think it had a commercial future!

Original patent: http://www.google.com/patents/US2879957
 

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Stargazer2006

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This FLUID SUSTAINED AND FLUID PROPELLED AIRCRAFT composite picture is made up of elements from two separate patents (one of them being that of the Aerodyne) and depicts alternate Aerodyne configurations.

Original patents:
http://www.google.com/patents/US2918230
http://www.google.com/patents/US2918231
 

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Stargazer2006

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More aesthetically pleasing was this TWIN SHROUD AERODYNE, of which two possible configurations are shown.

Original patent: http://www.google.com/patents/US2918232
 

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Stargazer2006

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As a bonus, another Lippisch patent for Collins, AERODYNAMIC AND CONTROLLING MEANS FOR DELTA WING AIRCRAFT, which deals with an unusual canard arrangement for a delta wing fighter. I'm also adding two photos of models showing that configuration.

Original patent: http://www.google.com/patents/US2693325
 

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Arjen

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Excellent. Helps me remember what a gold mine this site really is.
 

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