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"US/FRG" VG V/STOL Program: Boeing/EWR 360, Republic/EWR A400 AVS

uk 75

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Thanks for the pics. I remember the models well in the glass case
at Schwanheim.
I did try asking about documentation, but I think like in Britain the
stuff is still protected. Maybe worth another try.

Quite often models are not matched with good three views. The last
version of the AVS (A400) has a good two view, as does the earlier
A200 version. There is also the widely reproduced three view of a
middle version (above on this thread), which I have as well.

UK 75
 

uk 75

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Overscan

Your latest photo of two early versions of the AVS is very helpful. Thanks to this site we have
images of the evolution of the project from the early version with F111 style intakes, through the
square and separated fuselage top intakes into the A400 which is much curvier.

It would be interesting to know from anyone who worked at Boeing or Fairchild Republic how they evolved the design. The US in particular seems to have used the project as a technology development platform rather than for a definite military requirement. Or was the project clearly aimed at offering an F105 replacement?

The existence of the F-111 must have made any US purchase of an AVS-A400 type aircraft unlikely, but we see on other threads how the design was also offered in modified forms for later US requirements.

Again, overscan, much appreciated. I will try and dig out the drawing I have from a US magazine in 1965 or so showing the first version in your pic, but again in a slightly different shape, more like an F-111.

UK 75
 

overscan (PaulMM)

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Some basic EWR 360 info is in an Australian journal from 1964...


The proposed fighter, equipped with variable geometry wings (a in the F-111), will be powered with two RB. 153 afterburning main engines and either four RB.162-34s or two RB.189 lift engines.
And Boeing in-house journal from 1965:


The VJ-101 single seat vtol jet fighter prototype is the outstanding product of the ewr to date. ... An even more advanced concept is being studied by ewr with Boeing participation. Boelkow has assigned a team of about [] engineers to the consortium. Boeing's interest in Boelkow dates back to 1961 when the first in the series of technical collaborations — this one dealing with helicopter design — was discussed
360 seems to be a repackaging of the VJ-101D propulsion systems in a smaller, VG design.
 

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Boeing-EWR 360 factory models in two different scales. Big model is from Germany, and features a single-lever mechanism for opening all four lift-jet doors. Small model is likely from Boeing, with individual door operation.
 

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overscan (PaulMM)

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Interested in how the rear engines were vectored - nacelle doesn't look long enough to incorporate a deflector like on the VJ-101D.

Attached picture of AVS.
 

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overscan (PaulMM)

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Thanks to Ralph (UK75), here's a nice artwork of the early AVS design.
(From AW & ST 24. July 1967, page 83)
 

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overscan said:
Interested in how the rear engines were vectored - nacelle doesn't look long enough to incorporate a deflector like on the VJ-101D.
Engraved panel lines on these models suggest the rear portion of the main engine nacelles can be vectored downward, but no effort was made to make this functional, unlike later AVS models by Republic/Fairchild/EWR. I am still hoping to find some detailed drawings (in fact, ANY drawings) depicting the Boeing-EWR 360.
 

uk 75

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Overscan

Thanks for publishing the AVS artwork for me. The original came out of an American mag from
the 60s and was the plane that, with the TSR 2, got me hooked on What-if designs.

I would love to find out more about this iteration of the AVS as it looks so much like the F-111
and may have started life as a TFX design. The artwork sums up the bravura spirit of the 60s.

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iverson

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What was the logic of combining lift engines and variable geometry wings? Was this just a combination of the design fads of the era? Or was there some logic to it? To me it seems like two fundamentally opposed approaches to the same requirement.

Variable geometry is an aerodynamic approach. It lets you combine a wide-span, high-lift wing for STOL operations with a highly swept wing for low gust response at low levels and high speeds. The wing is complex and heavy, but the power-plant arrangements are fairly simple and the required thrust is modest.

Lift engines rely on thrust to achieve what the VG design does with aerodynamics. Lift engines allow VTOL, so you can dispense with the large wing altogether and have a stiff, light, short-span unit. But the power-plant arrangment is heavy and complex, and you need more thrust to get off the ground than you can use in flight.

Combining the two approaches thus appears to make no sense (except on the contractor's bottom line, no doubt). If you choose the STOL solution, you do not need the extra weight penalty and complexity of VTOL. If you choose VTOL, you do not need the extra weight penatly and complexity of STOL.
 

overscan (PaulMM)

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VG was considered (for a short time) the universal panacea, combining good high speed and low speed handling in one wing design. The weight and complexity implications were not clear at the time. VTOL was also in vogue and its weight penalties also not fully understood.

A bit later, LERX were all the rage, until canards became next season's "must have" accessory.

Don't forget as well that in practise Harriers operated in STOVL mode - I would think a VG wing in unswept configuration would help immensely in ultra short takeoffs assisted by thrust vectoring, while the engine would allow a vertical landing at lighter weights.
 

uk 75

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Noted from a German brochure- 60 sub. and supersonic avs studies. Boeing partner 64-6 in studyphase. System def. 67 with Fairchild. 1400 page final report. Vstol .A400 and stol .S400. Latter basis for nkf in 68.
 

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Links doesn't work :(
 

aim9xray

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Oops! Sorry about that!

Let's try the raw links - cut and paste into your browser:

[links dead - Admin]
 
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Caravellarella

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Dear Boys and Girls, here is a small piece in French on the EWR/Fairchild AVS variable geometry V/STOL "project"; what were they thinking of? The caption states that the pop-out lift engines could be swivelled and used for horizontal flight if the main engines are inoperable......

The piece comes from the 1st July 1967 issue of Aviation Magazine International......

Terry (Caravellarella)
 

Mark Nankivil

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Hi All -

Looks to be the Republic/EWR AVS proposal:

[links dead - Admin]

Enjoy the Day! Mark
 
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Stargazer2006

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Funny it has not been mentioned anywhere in this topic... The "AVS" acronym stood for "Advanced Vertical Strike-Fighter".
 

hesham

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In Flying Review 6/1965,


here is a contest for V/STOL strike and close-support fighter,and a small info about Lockheed
and North American proposals,I hope to know all tenders in this competition;


Boeing-EWR Type-360
General Dynamics ?
North American NA-? or D-?
Lockheed CL-?
Northrop N-?
Ryan M-?
Repulic A-400
 

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hesham

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hesham said:
here is a contest for V/STOL strike and close-support fighter,and a small info about Lockheed
and North American proposals,I hope to know all tenders in this competition;

Boeing-EWR Type-360
General Dynamics ?
North American NA-? or D-?
Lockheed CL-?
Northrop N-?
Ryan M-?
Repulic A-400

Hi,


for Ryan,I think it was M-182.
 

uk 75

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This remains my favourite 60s drawing board strike aircraft project



I first saw this drawing in a magazine I found in 1971 and have been hooked on this plane ever since. The idea of a strike fighter for the US and German Air Forces able to leap up from its airbase as in the drawing was so of its time. Of course it was completely mad and reality intervened. But whenever I see picture of the Republic F105 Thunderchief in 60s metal or Vietnam colours I imagine this AVS as the F15 Thunderstrike. Happy days!
 
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hesham

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Hi,

the US/FRG in details.

https://smartech.gatech.edu/bitstream/handle/1853/32620/e-16-501_83233.pdf
 

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hesham

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Artist drawings.
 

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hesham

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Hi,

http://archive.aviationweek.com/image/spread/19670619/37/2
 

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overscan (PaulMM)

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Major features of the winning Republic Aviation design proposal for possible development of a V/STOL strike fighter are shown in model above. The design calls for a variable sweep wing and two podded, fuselage-housed lift engines on either side that swing out into the operating position during the vertical flight regimes. The lift engines. designated XV99-RA-1, are being developed jointly by the Allison Div. of General Motors Corp. and Britain's Rolls-Royce. Retractable panels for the proposed auxiliary inlets for the main cruise engine are located at the top and near the rear of the fuselage. Republic was selected as the American contractor to participate with Entwicklungsring-Sud, the West German participant. Initial versions of the lift engine would have a thrust-to-weight ratio of at least 18:1. Competition for the cruise engine is still under way, with both General Electric and Pratt & Whitney holding study contracts. Both U.S. and West German proponents of the V/STOL fighter project are seeking funds to build 12 prototypes for field evaluations.

Problems Cloud Future of V/STOL Fighter
By Cecil Brownlow


Washington—Future of the proposed U.S.-West German V/STOL tactical fighter is clouded by a myriad of political, military and financial questions, including top level
squabbles within the Pentagon. So far as an operational aircraft bearing U.S. markings is concerned, the project will have to do battle for the defense dollar with a number of other pet service projects, including the Air Force’s Mach 2.8 FX and the Navy’s VFAX advanced interceptor proposals. Defense Dept. and industry officials generally agree that, at the most, only one of these aircraft will be given the green light to go into production.

The U. S. and West German V/STOL aircraft, known popularly as the U.S.-F.R.G. (Federal Republic of Germany) fighter, also recently has run afoul of intradepartmental politics inside the Pentagon, finding itself competing against a visionary concept dubbed the “international fighter” (AW&ST Mar. 13, p. 16). The “international fighter” is the brain child of the Defense Dept.’s Office of International Security Affairs (I.S.A.), which has Defense Secretary Robert S. McNamara’s mandate to promote and sell U. S. military hardware on the export market as one means of easing this country‘s balance-of-payments problem.

As envisioned by its I.S.A. backers, the “international fighter" would be a multimission aircraft developed on a multi-lateral basis and capable of replacing the FX, VFAX, the U.S.-F.R.G. V/STOL aircraft and the planned Anglo-French variable-geometry fighter. The U. S. would profit, its proponents contend, by producing and selling major components and sub-components to the other nations participating in the “international fighter” program - hopefully Great Britain, France and West Germany. Backers of the project also realize that it is doomed if the U.S.-F.R.G. fighter receives a production go-ahead, and at least some of them have begun a sniping campaign within the halls and conference rooms of the Pentagon in an effort to block it. This is being countered by supporters of the V/STOL aircraft in the Air Force and the Directorate of Defense Research and Engineering, where it has strong support in some quarters.

While the “international fighter“ plan reportedly has received some encouragement from McNamara. it probably is doomed in any event. Neither the British nor the French have displayed any great enthusiasm over the project because of the future production requirements of their own aerospace industries. The thought of design teams from four countries sitting down to draft and agree upon the criteria for a single aircraft to satisfy the requirements and concepts of all also is painful to technicians on both sides of the Atlantic who have attempted to participate in such programs in the past. The North Atlantic Treaty Organization in its heyday promoted a number of similar projects.
None were spectacularly successful, either financially or from a design point of view, and most broke down completely along nationalistic lines during the early stages of design debate.

To further complicate the probable futures of the U.S.-F.R.G. V/STOL aircraft and the “international fighter.” the British are urging the West Germans to abandon thoughts of both and join with the United Kingdom and France in the development and production of the proposed Anglo-French Variable-Geometry fighter. With the infusion of West German technical talent and financial backing, the British argue, the variable geometry fighter would be a strong contender on the export market against any probable U.S. entrants in the same category.

British Proposal

Backers of the U.S.-F.R.G. proposal here contend that the acceptance of the British proposal by West Germany would be a technical. and probably a financial, reversal for that country. The Anglo-French design, they say, is based largely on 1960 technology similar to that employed in the USAF/General Dynamics F-111A variable-geometry
fighter now nearing the operational stage and will be obsolete well before the end of its service life. The V/STOL aircraft, they contend, is being designed around 1966-67 technology, has a built-in growth potential and, if finally approved and adopted, will be capable of holding its own in the inventory of a first-line air force for 20 years at least.

As currently envisioned, the variable geometry U. S.-West German V/STOL would be a two-man tandem aircraft with a maximum gross weight of 40,000-45,000lb, placing it in the medium-weight fighter class. It would be able to attain near-supersonic speeds in the so-called “low-low-level" flight regime and have a built-in capability for self defense. In the self-defense mode, the aircraft should be more than a match for any of the current series of Soviet interceptors at altitudes below 20,000 ft. Above that level, however, it would be at a distinct disadvantage. since its present design stresses the attack role. Under USAF planning, the second crewman would be a rated pilot with additional training as a bombardier-navigator.

Informal studies are being made on possibilities of the conversion of the basic aircraft design into an interceptor to fill the mission as an “interim" FX fighter, including the use of higher thrust cruise engines with better powerplant maneuverability. Advocates of this approach contend that the aircraft could be employed to fill the gap until
a truly-advanced interceptor could be designed and produced. So far as the present FX concept is concerned, one veteran designer says. “it’s ridiculous to build an aluminum [Mach] 2.8 interceptor that won‘t even be able to overtake an advanced SST [supersonic transport]. It should be a titanium design and able to do better than Mach 3."

For the moment. however. the primary push within the U.S.-F.R.G. program is directed toward the design of a competent V/STOL strike fighter. Planned lift engine, should the aircraft reach maturity in either the prototype or production form. will be the result of a joint development effort currently under way under terms of a government- to-government agreement by the Allison Div. of General Motors Corp. and Rolls-Royce. Inc. The British firm is the definite technological leader in the project, based upon its past design and production experience in this field. Designation of the lift engine is the XV99-RA-1. The podded, retractable, swing-out lift engines probably will be located along either side of the fuselage beneath the variable-sweep wings. Present thinking calls for two engines on either side. The initial versions of the lift engine are scheduled to have a thrust-to-weight ratio of between 18—20:1, with a growth potential of 22—24:1. Both General Electric and Pratt & Whitney have contracts to investigate possible cruise-engine configurations for the aircraft.

Engines Retract

The lift engines. which would be retracted into the body of the fuselage when not in use, also could be vectored and modulated to permit STOL-type operations, with overload payload takeoffs possible from runways with lengths of 2,000 ft. or less. “This could be a tremendous airplane with an overload.” says one USAF officer working on the project. “In the STOL mode. it could be a big truck. We're still conducting studies to see just how good it could be, but it looks as though it will be better [so far as its overload capability is concerned] than any of the conventional aircraft we’ve had experience with." As for its ability to use runways of 2,000 ft. or less in the STOL mode, he adds that there are “many, many strips of that length throughout the world. You could take it almost anywhere, and, if you got in a corner, you could always use ‘V.'"

The next hurdle for the U.S.-ERG. program is to win approval from the two countries to go into the prototype construction stage. Its backers would like to see a total of 12 prototypes built on a joint basis to permit an extensive and prolonged series of field evaluation trials. It appears doubtful, however, that the Defense Dept. will agree to such a quantity, even if it should approve a move into the prototype stage when the current contract definition phase comes to an end late this fall.

The two contractors engaged in the contract definition phase are the Republic Aviation Div. of Fairchild Hiller Corp. and West Germany’s Entwicklungsring-Sud industry consortium. The two firms. selected from four US. and two German contractors that had competed in the earlier design phase, have established a joint management company to supervise the program, EWRFairchild International.

Cost Sharing

With the US. and West Germany sharing the costs on a 50-50 basis, the contract definition studies are being conducted by the two companies in Munich. and approximately 80 Republic engineers. programmers and management experts have been dispatched there to aid in the work. The joint military systems project office has been established at Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio. About 20 German technicians have been assigned there on a temporary basis to assist in this portion of the project. In addition to these formal channels, the engine and airframe contractors are working closely together to assure that compatibility is maintained in these areas. USAF officials say Republic and
Entwicklungsring-Sud were selected primarily because of the similarity of their original designs. The West German firm's proposal called for a somewhat smaller
airframe, but both companies envisioned the use of swing-out lift engines and a variable-sweep wing. Major difference between the two was in the positioning of the engine inlets. Republic's design placed the main inlets on either side of the fuselage beneath the wing. Entwicklungsring - Sud‘s proposal called for them to be located on the top of the fuselage.

lnlet Problems

In view of the inlet problems encountered in the U. S. with several recent-model aircraft, including the F-111 and the Ling-Temco-Vought A-7A attack aircraft, the decision as to just where the inlets should be placed probably represents the major task confronting the team working on the contract definition phase. according to officials
here. “We’ve done a thorough analysis on the compatibility of the airframe and propulsion systems." says one. "We want to know exactly where the inlets should be before we make a decision, and we’re working hard on this problem to try and be sure that were right.” The contract definition phase studies, when completed, also will include recommendations as to how the production effort of any prototypes should be divided between the two countries and where the formal flight testing should be conducted. Final assembly probably would be carried out in each country. Flight testing also probably would be conducted in each. but it is expected that any high-speed evaluation trials would he held in the U. S. because of the lack of real estate for such purposes in West Germany.

Under present planning, the bilateral aspects of the agreement would come to an end at the conclusion of the prototype phase. Production of operational models of the aircraft by either country would be conducted on a unilateral basis—and this is one area in which the supporters of the “international fighter" cite the superiority of their plan.

The decision as to whether to take the step into the prototype phase is expected to be made by the end of the year. There are no available funds for this in the Defense Dept.’s Fiscal 1968 budget requests, but little, if any, money would be required before Fiscal I969.

Side view of the two-place Republic V/STOL fighter design shows the proposed position for the main cruise engine on the side of the fuselage beneath the variable-sweep wing in model above. Closed panels for the lift engine and swing-out arm can be seen farther forward. German industry participant in the program, Entwicklungsring-Sud, proposed that the main inlets be located on top of the fuselage. Final inlet positioning currently is under study in both U.S. and West Germany.
Aviation Week & Space Technology May 29 1967
 

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hesham

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Nice Info my dear Paul.
 

overscan (PaulMM)

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So, no Boeing-EWR 360 drawing still. However, there are some nice drawings of various EWR VJ-101 studies more-or-less forming the pre-history of this design and the relation of the US/FRG to VJ-101.

Source: http://www.klassiker-der-luftfahrt.de/geschichte/flugzeuge/ewr-vj-101-alle-varianten-teil-1/523608

The not-seen 'VJ-101E' seems likely to be the same design as the Boeing-EWR 360. '360' is clearly the EWR type number. Its possible the A400 falls into this sequence too.

Proceeding to the Republic/EWR design, the information presented in Aviation Week says that 4 US companies presented studies for US_FRG along with EWR, and Republic's design was selected partly for its similarity to the EWR proposal, differing mainly in engine intake location with the EWR design using dorsal intakes and the Republic design using intakes on the fuselage sides. It also shows photos of the side intake version captioned specifically as "Republic" not Republic/EWR while the separate dorsal intakes version is captioned specifically as EWR.

I believe based on AWST information that the dorsal intake design with separate intakes is the EWR proposal and the side intake design the Republic proposal, leading to the later joint A400 design. The single dorsal intake design has been stated as an earlier revision to the separate intakes one, so perhaps thats an earlier EWR design?

Thoughts?
 

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overscan (PaulMM)

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Meanwhile Flight has a reference to the Republic/EWR A400 (prior to Germany going it alone).
 

overscan (PaulMM)

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So - 4 US contenders were selected from 9 bids for US/FRG in August 1965 as follows:

Boeing
McDonnell
Lockheed & Bell (team)
Republic

2 German bids were selected from
VFW
EWR

By September 1966, EWR had won the German competition.
By December 1966, Republic had won the US competition.

Source: Aviation Week & Space Technology August 23 1965, September 6 1965, September 12 1966, December 5 1966
 

overscan (PaulMM)

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Initial Boeing/EWR 360 (VJ-101E) studies date back to 1964, before the US/German Summit where the US/FRG idea was hatched (by politicians).
 
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