The 51st edition of the Paris Air Show got off to a rather gloomy start, with a gray sky threatening to spoil all the static and in-the-air fun. Thankfully, the rain never appeared and Gizmag joined spirited show-goers for a gawk at some splendid show spectacles.
A couple of days ago, we heard how Airbus Helicopters had announced the concept phase of its planned X6 heavy-lift helicopter.
That aircraft will borrow some features from the company's new H160
medium-lift model. Although the H160 was introduced at the Heli-Expo
trade show back in March, its first flight took place on June 13th and
was announced this week at the Paris Air Show.
Airbus Helicopters has just announced the launch of the concept phase of
its planned X6 heavy-lift helicopter. Over the next two years, the
company will be seeking input from corporate customers and evaluating
different designs. Possible applications for the aircraft could include
oil and gas missions, or search and rescue operations.
While armed drones like the Predator
tend to attract most of the attention when it comes to military use of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), the unmanned K-MAX helicopter recently demonstrated its ability to evacuate wounded fighters from a hypothetical battlefield.
The next big discovery is always beyond the next hill, but what if you can't see over it? That's the problem facing NASA with its Mars rovers, so the space agency is looking into how robotic helicopters could help scout the land ahead and give engineers back on Earth data to help plot the best route.
A helicopter landing on the flightdeck of a destroyer is hardly news – unless it's the US Navy's latest Unmanned Aerial Vehicle. Northrop Grumman's MQ-8C Fire Scout
became the first unmanned helicopter to operate from a US destroyer on December 16. Under guidance of the ship's ground control station, the MQ-8C made 22 takeoffs and 22 precision landings on the guided missile destroyer USS Jason Dunham (DDG 109) off the coast of Virginia.
When you're using helicopters to dump water on forest fires, it goes without saying that the faster you can obtain and deliver water from lakes or other sources, the better. Most currently-used systems are able to gather H2O at rates ranging from 1,700 to 4,000 liters (450 to 1,056 US gal) per minute, which is fairly impressive. A new system developed by Spanish firm Inventec, however, is claimed to be capable of sucking up 1,000 L (264 gal) in just five seconds
– that scales up to a rate of 12,000 L (3,170 gal) per minute. What's more, it's also said to be safer.
Gizmag recently took the opportunity to tour the Hangar-7 Museum in Red Bull's hometown of Salzburg, Austria. With an underlying theme of speed and adrenaline, the stylish, hangar-inspired gallery serves up an ever-changing collection of air and land race hardware. Step inside for a virtual tour of intriguing architecture and high-performance machinery.
Sikorsky's record-breaking X2 Demonstrator
helicopter may be a museum piece these days, but the technology that went into it is still alive and kicking as the United Technologies subsidiary takes the wraps off the first of its two S-97 Raider helicopter prototypes. According to Sikorsky, this event marks the beginning of the armed reconnaissance ‘copter’s flight tests aimed at providing the US Army with its next generation of combat rotorcraft.