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JMR (Joint Multi-Role) & FVL (Future Vertical Lift) Programs

H_K

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Sikorsky have already said that Raider hit 207 knots in 2018, but admitted to some vibration challenges. I understand that they may not want to reveal a top speed and with an outside pilot on board they might not push as hard but IMHO anything less than 200 knots implies that problems haven’t been resolved.

As a reminder 9 years ago the Eurocopter X3 hit 232 knots, 8 years ago it was being demoed with multiple pilots in hot weather (ISA+20) at 206 knots, and 7 years ago the X3 hit 255kts.... and THAT was supposedly an inferior design!
 

TomcatViP

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The X-3 has no operational futur. It's an experimental aircraft achieving similar perf than other demonstrators.
It's like comparing a street legal car and a Nhra dragster that won't go significantly faster...
 
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H_K

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The X3 was an operational aircraft turned into a demonstrator. So at least in terms of size, weight, vibrations, drag etc it was representative of something real... and flying at 255 knots with no vibration problems proves that the underlying technology has potential to work in the real world.

Meanwhile Sikorsky is having trouble scaling a technology that was notoriously hard to scale (rigid coax rotors). The X2 was completely experimental and was too small to be a demonstrator for any real-world operational aircraft, so the S-97 is the first practical demonstrator (though still too small to be operationally representative). And all the evidence points to it having unresolved problems.
 
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TomcatViP

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You are delusional. The X-3 isn't anything like operational even in the discretized manner Airbus Military has shown it understands operational requirements (loosely... Very loosely).
 
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H_K

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You misunderstood me. The X3 was the size and weight of an operational aircraft, being directly derived from the EC155. As a result, the data collected in terms of drag, vibration etc can now be carried over to an operational aircraft with few surprises from a scaling perspective. The biggest challenge they have right now is to productize the technology (weight reduction and lift/drag optimization), which is more straightforward.

The X2 meanwhile was not so useful from a risk reduction perspective as it was too small. Sikorsky cried victory too soon... now we are 10 years (and 1 crash) later, the S-97 has been flying for 5+ years and it still seems to be struggling to reliably break 200 knots.
 

yasotay

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To my knowledge neither Sikorsky platform has sustained 205 knots TIAS in level flight. @tomcat - while not a great fan of the X3 as a tactical rotorcraft (a big bias against unprotected props around soldiers at night), I do think there are some viable missions it would do well in (MEDEVAC comes to mind). Having had the opportunity to see X3 when it was on its US tour, it certainly seemed robust enough for the job.
 
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TomcatViP

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@yasotay :
IMOHO the robust scent came from the Panther breed. Years after it is still an impressive design.

When I will see the X cruise 500 miles & do combat mission I think I would be ready to talk further ;)

Cobra can dive 220kt by the way.
 
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yasotay

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I actually was privileged to fly that very aircraft in 1988 under the careful observation of Test Pilot Claude Gaud (sp) of then Eurocopter. It was the first time I had been upside down in a helicopter. Awesome maneuverability, power and visibility. I was absolutely awed at how well it responded. I was unconcerned with the fantastic maneuvers though as I was flying with a test pilot named "god".
 

TomcatViP

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That $13.5M contract is similar to the one for Sikorsky of $13M announced last month.
 
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fredymac

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Another CGI of Invictus. Its only on twitter and it seems video links to twitter don't work anymore.

There is also a picture from Bell's display in the Czech Republic and I was wondering about the missile/bomb looking exhibit behind the Venom/Viper models.

Twitter Video (hopefully)


Bell Exhibit/Czech Replubic
Czech Display.jpg
 

TomS

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It's an AIM-9X seen from a slight angle, making the front end look narrower than it should. The photo is from Defense24.pl (https://www.defence24.pl/mspo-2020-bell-pokazuje-doswiadczenia-z-czech-i-walczy-o-polskie-smiglowce). Translated by Google, the article says:

The stand also presents models of the UH-1Y Venom and AH-1Z Viper helicopters, along with a full-size mock-up of the latest AIM-9X Sidewinder air-to-air missile currently being integrated on the Viper helicopter.
 
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sferrin

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Odd that the shape appears so different. Must be angle and lighting.

The other distortion comes from the model helicopter blades that cut across the missile seeker and tail section. They create a bit of an optical illusion about the shape.

I would not recommend flying near an AH-1Z with a pair of AIM-9Xs. :D
 

yasotay

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So I am going to put this here as it seems to be the catch all for Future Vertical Lift. Now I am going to go read the entire thread for the Ryan XV-5. SOF guys want jet speed without open rotors. Think XV-5 is likely one of the more mature options. Only other option that comes to mind is the stop-fold rotors. Of course there is also the fabled Senior Citizen efforts.
1600451558731.png
 
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sferrin

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Nowhere near the payload of a V-22. Maybe a V-22 with one of these on each end? (Or an X-22 with lower bypass ducts for higher speed? Of course now you get quite a blast during VTOL. . .)

h598x2p93im21.jpg
 

fredymac

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VTOL capability with jet like speed and range. The only new wrinkle that's popped up is distributed electric propulsion. Everything else (tilt wing/augmented lift/X wing/canard rotor/etc) never produced the results they hoped for.
 

fredymac

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Nowhere near the payload of a V-22. Maybe a V-22 with one of these on each end? (Or an X-22 with lower bypass ducts for higher speed? Of course now you get quite a blast during VTOL. . .)

View attachment 641238


According to Wiki, the NK93 propfan had a 114 inch diameter. For comparison the GE9x engine is 134 inch which shows just how much bypass they are getting with the latest turbofans.
 

jsport

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Then there is this idea that showed up from AFRLView attachment 641252
Will someone please explain why this creature is not just like the Aurora’s LightningStrike design which was another=
w/ extra weight, extra complexity w/ loss and drag spread al over like butter and maintainence issues?
 

yasotay

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Don't disagree with complexity arguments and suspect the Lightning Strike point might also be true. Then the same arguments were thrown at the CV-22 and the MH-53 in their time. My point was only that the AFSOC wants something that goes faster and further than the CV-22 or the (current) FVL offerings, is not reliant on predictable landing spaces, and that it seems that AFRL is working the issue.
 

RavenOne

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Foreign interest not just from us Brits (also eagerness to participate in FVL) but now from the Italians. However it is not altogether clear with the funding leftovers for Italy..

 

TomcatViP

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What is that... A 20 to 30 meter shaft, driven by 3 high power engines through a massive gb?!! You'd probably better do with a rear mounted turbine to drive the rear rotor to save you nightmarish years of testing.
 

jsport

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Contracrtors and the officers seeking to work at those contractors will not even introduce anything but mild upgrades to their profit babies. It remains shanmeful.
 

AeroFranz

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That's a student design report. I'm sure the students at UMD are taught well (it is one of the few centers of rotorcraft excellence) but i wouldn't necessarily trust the skills of a college senior ;)
source: at one point i was one of those seniors in an aero engineering program doing design competitions:p
 

TomcatViP

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About 1,000 helicopters — including, among non-U.S. NATO nations, around 100 Mil Mi-8/17s, 191 Airbus SA330 Pumas, 167 Sikorsky S-70/UH-60 Black Hawks, 143 Leonardo AW101s and 331 NH90s — are scheduled to retire between 2030 and 2045, according to U.K. Royal Marine Col. Paul Morris, who serves with NATO’s Vertical Lift Joint Capability Group.

 

Hood

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About 1,000 helicopters — including, among non-U.S. NATO nations, around 100 Mil Mi-8/17s, 191 Airbus SA330 Pumas, 167 Sikorsky S-70/UH-60 Black Hawks, 143 Leonardo AW101s and 331 NH90s — are scheduled to retire between 2030 and 2045, according to U.K. Royal Marine Col. Paul Morris, who serves with NATO’s Vertical Lift Joint Capability Group.
Just as the Czechs buy new Super Hueys and Cobras with origins in the mid-1960s....
I would think the NH90s being relatively young airframes will go on to have long life, look at the RAF with the Puma... wouldn't surprise me if the RAF doesn't reach 100 years on those airframes at this rate (the irony of course being that NH90 was meant to replace the Puma in Europe but never quite managed it).
 

TomcatViP

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The French Alat (Army light aviation) has today the lowest mission rate of its entire history at 30 something percent.
Sure, Puma and NH90 can last 100years but doing so flying how many hundreds hours?...
 
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Fluff

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Maybe already suggested, but for a VTOL transport, couldnt you double up on F35 arrangement, 2 engines, 2 lift fans? All the bits are in production, just a bit of kitbashing needed?

Aerodynamically a fat F35 scaled up?

what have the F35 designers been doing for the last 15 years?
 

fredymac

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How many times do you see the F-35B takeoff vertically? It can but not without much in the way of payload (or gas).
 

Fluff

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How many times do you see the F-35B takeoff vertically? It can but not without much in the way of payload (or gas).
So- short take off - from your base, travel 500 miles, drop 20 men, or 2 jeeps, Vertical take off.

Depends how limited your mission is, and what your prepared to do without.

if this is true special forces.

For sure a VTOL mini herc doesnt make a lot of sense.
 

fredymac

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JMR requires vertical takeoff/vertical landing just like current Blackhawk/Osprey missions. Presumption is no landing strip at mission operations area.
 

TomS

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Maybe already suggested, but for a VTOL transport, couldnt you double up on F35 arrangement, 2 engines, 2 lift fans? All the bits are in production, just a bit of kitbashing needed?

Runs into the same problem as the various twin Pegasus concepts did -- how do you survive an engine out event in the hover without instantly flipping the aircraft on its back? The clutch to allow the F135 to drive one lift fan is bad enough, but a clutch that would combine power from two turbines out to two lift fans would be very challenging. Or maybe two turbines into one lift fan, but that's a big point of failure for an aircraft carrying pax not in ejection seats. (And unlike a helicopter or tiltrotor, this won't auto rotate at all).

Then you also need to figure out how to do some sort of cross duct or something so the turbine exhaust can be balanced at the back end in the event of an engine failure as well.

Suddenly the appeal of all-electric distributed lift and thrust becomes clear. If only we knew how to make it work at this scale.
 

yasotay

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I mentioned somewhere the problem with jets and small high speed fans blasting unprepared ground. They tends to dig big holes and set things alight (recall V-22 and F-35 cooking metal decks). Neither is popular with the customer (nor the maintainers I might add). This is one reason tilt-wing and likely ducted fan did not see service even though the technology was viable. There were of course technical and mechanical challenges as well but the velocity of the downwash/outwash was excessive, even compared to the V-22. If anyone has data on the velocity from some of the tilt wings I would love to see if this is correct.

I do not think NATO is interested in JMR/FVL for tactical combat in Europe, but for all of the "away" missions it finds itself involved in with our wonderful multi-polar world. Range and speed to get to a point have become a necessity in the information age. Taking a week to respond might be alright. Taking a month, the situation is likely resolved, likely not to NATO's satisfaction.
 

H_K

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I do not think NATO is interested in JMR/FVL for tactical combat in Europe, but for all of the "away" missions it finds itself involved in with our wonderful multi-polar world. Range and speed to get to a point have become a necessity

The problem is requiring both range AND speed AND affordability. Pick two... unlikely that all three can be achieved.
 

AeroFranz

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Handy chart showing the relationship between discloading and downwash velocity.
The V-22 sits around 22 lb/ft2 and is not *very* pleasant to stand beneath.
Tilt-wings are anywhere between 30-50 lbs/ft2, so it only gets worse.

It is interesting to note that the downwash hits the ground and then spreads radially horizontally, but the vertical distribution of the velocity is different in the case of higher vs lower discloading. With low discloadings, the flow has the highest speed some distance away from the ground, so it tends to overturn people. With high discloadings, the flow has higher speed, but it's concentrated at lower heights above the ground, hence with less overturning moment. Walking in that high speed flow has been described as akin to "wading in a shallow stream".
1602537723934.png
 

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