Lockheed Martin LMH-1 heavy-lift hybrid airship

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"Paris Air Show 2015: Lockheed Martin unveils new heavy-lift hybrid airship"
Gareth Jennings, London - IHS Jane's Defence Weekly
17 June 2015

Source:
http://www.janes.com/article/52319/paris-air-show-2015-lockheed-martin-unveils-new-heavy-lift-hybrid-airship

Lockheed Martin plans to offer a new 20-tonne-capacity hybrid airship to the international heavy-haulage market, company executives announced at the Paris Air Show on 16 June.

The Lockheed Martin Hybrid (LMH)-1 vehicle, which will be based on the Skunk Works-developed P-791 prototype that first flew in 2006, is the culmination of more than 20 years of the company's involvement in the field of hybrid airship technology, the head of Aeronautics division, Orlando Carvalho, told reporters at Le Bourget.

"This is now the transition from concept to reality," he said at the launch event.

As with all hybrid airships, the LMH-1 is actually a heavier-than-air vehicle, with 80% of its lift coming from the buoyancy of the helium enclosed within it, and the remaining 20% coming from the aerodynamics of the rigid outer shell. Being heavier-than-air, it does not require mooring masts or tie-down points to secure it to the ground. Instead, it uses the Air Cushion Landing System (ACLS) that serves as something like a hovercraft, enabling the vehicle to manoeuvre on the ground. It can also provide suction to better secure it when loading or unloading cargo.

Specifications released by Lockheed Martin give the LMH-1 a cruise speed of 60 kt; a range of 1,400 n miles; a payload of up to 21,000 kg-plus in the 3 x 3 x 18 m cargo bay; the capability to carry 19 passengers; a 730 m field requirement (or the ability to do a near-vertical take-off with a reduced payload within 150 m). It will be driven by four 300 hp diesel thrust-vectoring engines and is 'the size of a football field' (exact dimensions were not given).

The launch event also saw Lockheed Martin announce a partnering agreement with Hybrid Enterprises of Atlanta, Georgia, for marketing the vehicle. According to Carvalho, the target market is the commercial world of oil exploration and mining, although he noted that the company stands ready to support any military requirements, be they the sale or lease of the airship.

Carvalho said that all of the LMH-1's technology has been validated, and that certification by the US Federal Aviation Administration was the next major milestone. He noted though that, while Lockheed Martin is "committed" to the vehicle, it will only build a prototype once at least one customer has been signed up. Should that happen, first flight is expected in mid-2016.
 

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"Far From Classical Gas, Hybrid Airship Venture Floated Here"
Jun 17, 2015 Paul Jackson | ShowNews

Source:
http://aviationweek.com/paris-air-show-2015/far-classical-gas-hybrid-airship-venture-floated-here

Not your typical “Zeppelin” this new-technology airship has some novel features. After 20 years of development, first order now sought.

Lockheed Martin (Static C2) is not the first to be enthused by the possibilities of the giant cargo airship for transportation off the beaten track. But it thinks it can succeed where many predecessors have failed. Accordingly, at Tuesday’s Paris Air Show, it announced a partnership with Hybrid Enterprises to sell the 20-ton payload LMH-1 tri-lobe craft on the civil market.

The venture builds on 20 years of work, most recently with the smaller P-791 technology demonstrator. A LMH-1 could be certified in 2017 and delivered the following year, although no prototype will be constructed until a firm order is secured. So these dates could slip.

Cementing the new partnership in the Show ceremony were Orlando Carvalho, EVP Lockheed Martin Aeronautics; and Rob Binns, CEO of Hybrid Enterprises. The latter company is staffed by professionals experienced in sales and marketing of cargo aircraft and exclusively committed to the LMH-1 and any larger versions to follow.

Your typical “Zeppelin” it is not. When fully laden, a helium-filled LMH-1 generates 80% of its lift from gas displacement and the remainder by dynamic means from its wing-type shape. But when unladen, it is buoyant.

“Landing gear” is best described as a couple of air cushion vehicles on the underside, which slow the descent and facilitate ground taxiing. The even more clever bit is that once taxiing is complete, they are reversed into “suck” mode and the craft anchors itself to the ground. No more mooring masts.
 

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fredymac

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Still promoting their hybrid airship but not enough market confidence to do a formal program launch.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JO76dkzV28k
 

blackstar

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New artwork including the cargo bay.
 

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Grey Havoc

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https://www.heavyliftpfi.com/sectors/hybrid-air-freighters-partners-with-columbia-helicopters/
 

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