volocopter

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craneplaneguy   10 kW

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volocopter

Post by craneplaneguy » Apr 28 2017 3:13pm

Not sure if this has been on here, spotted on my aviation sites I hang out on.

https://backcountrypilot.org/community/ ... pter-20618

I posted the link to the av forum, as it's interesting to see what other pilots think of it.
I can't help but think: OK, you're up at altitude after a power consumptive vert takeoff, and now you transition into cruise.....but you're still beating the air into submission, rather then developing lift like a wing does. This thing, with a small wing to help "hold it up" once at cruising speed, makes sense to me. I'm no rotor wing pilot, maybe all those rotors develop lift with increased airspeed, don't know, but I do know a conventional helicopter takes huge amounts of fuel and power to do what they do.

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Re: volocopter

Post by flat tire » Apr 28 2017 3:42pm

For rotorcraft the spinning blades themselves act as wings once it starts moving.

A conventional helicopter is a lot more efficient and a lot safer too since you've still got control after a complete engine failure.

dirkdiggler   10 kW

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Re: volocopter

Post by dirkdiggler » Apr 28 2017 6:30pm


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Chalo   100 GW

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Re: volocopter

Post by Chalo » Apr 28 2017 7:37pm

I can't see what advantage this could possibly have over an autogyro (with powered rotor spin-up for takeoff). Sustained hover, I guess? Not much of an advantage in return for the extra complexity.
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liveforphysics   100 GW

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Re: volocopter

Post by liveforphysics » Apr 28 2017 9:16pm

It's pretty awesome for flights under 1hr. Incredible control authority beyond planes or helicopters, and awesome multi-motor/prop failure redundancy.

Also, since the props bolt to the can of the outrunner motor, the only moving parts for service are motor bearings which can be sized to last 10's of thousands of hours of flight time between service, where an airplane or helicopter has a number of moving parts with critical vehicle failure modes to inspect.

Also, a child could be taught to proficiently fly the volocopter in half an hour. Learning to fly a helicopter is considerably more tricky to learn.
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Re: volocopter

Post by amberwolf » Apr 29 2017 3:13am

craneplaneguy wrote:Not sure if this has been on here,
this search lists all posts with the word in them
https://endless-sphere.com/forums/searc ... mit=Search
and this is a list of topics that mention it
https://endless-sphere.com/forums/searc ... mit=Search

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Re: volocopter

Post by flat tire » Apr 29 2017 12:33pm

Control authority and redundancy* (*yes I will explain this below) are NOT practical advantages this thing has over existing helicopters. The practical advantages this thing has over a helicopter are 1) it's vastly mechanically simpler and 2) very easy to fly (ONLY because it incorporates full authority digital control software, which helicopters can also use--just due to tradition, great expense in certification, and existing high barriers to flying helicopters nobody's gotten around to doing this for a low-cost general aviation helicopter).

Helicopters with semi-rigid or fully articulated rotor systems are capable of really EXTREME control authority provided the craft is engineered to handle the resulting forces. Multi rotors can only dream of doing the kind of maneuvers these helicopters can do. Just look at the RC world.

The multi motor scheme is definitely NOT a survivability advantage and not necessarily a reliability advantage either. Maybe you can have 2 motors fail maximum...at that point, if you have another motor failure and you're more than a certain distance above the ground death is nearly guaranteed! Helicopters can safely descend from most combinations of height and speed under full control with exactly NO engines running. And of course you need to learn the safe height / speed curve for your aircraft, to avoid being in an unrecoverable situation should the engines quit. Now, if the probability of a catastrophic powertrain / control failure (since they're basically one and the same) can be shown to be lower than the probability of an experienced pilot botching his auto after his reliable, certified engine fails...then you have something. I think that may take a while to show, although I don't think there will be a shortage of willing pilots for full digital craft like these.

Efficiency it does not have over helicopters either. The disc loading in a multirotor is rather high compared to a helicopter whose disc terminates at similar dimensions as the multirotor props. And, most human-bearing helicopters run at one speed only, allowing the powertrain to be optimized for that speed. Multirotors, unless they're collective pitch, have no choice but to use drive speed to vary thrust. Then, you have the additional issue that the multirotor props are fixed pitch--they're forced to run at high angle of attack in cruise (or low AoA and very high RPM for low speed flight) whereas the helo disc is big, make a lot of lift, and can cruise at relatively low mean AoA.

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Re: volocopter

Post by dirkdiggler » Apr 29 2017 6:57pm

Here's the RC world comparison:



Do you ever see heli's doing fpv racing like this? Haven't seen that yet, but may exist somewhere.


Quads seem to have taken over. Why is that? Difficult and expensive, just like the full size versions. Most heli pilots eventually end up dead, so much for the safety of engine failure. Who knows what will happen with full size quads? I know a bunch of mine have dropped like dead ducks out of the sky. Even our local gyrocoptor instructors have deaths every few years. Its not the air that kills, but the ground.

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Re: volocopter

Post by dirkdiggler » Aug 10 2017 6:54pm

Another promo video

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