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21st Century airship is made from aluminium

26 January 2017

Aeros’ newest air vehicle, Aeroscraft, was developed to provide new ways of moving heavy and oversized cargo or even become a sky yacht for the rich.

Aeroscraft 7 (Credit: Aeros)

A historic development is taking place in aviation. The vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) capability of helicopters, range and cargo capacity of airplanes, and fuel consumption benefits of lighter-than-air (LTA) vehicles are being combined with innovative new technology and textiles to create a new class of aircraft. The Aeroscraft will serve military, business, and humanitarian efforts in exciting new ways.

The Aeroscraft will be a game changer for global logistical solutions, lifting 66,000 or 250,000kg to establish new commercial transportation alternatives for the 21st century. The Aeroscraft does not require runways, airports, or ground support. It expands the potential for commercial cargo transport, has strategic and tactical military mobility applications, and could be vital in large-scale humanitarian relief efforts around the globe. 

For the military, the Aeroscraft can provide mobility solutions. For commercial companies, it will revolutionise cargo logistics, especially for oversized payloads, or where infrastructure challenges and personnel limitations apply. For the rest of us, we may soon be able to cruise the skies in greater comfort and with amazing ground views. For the ultra-rich, translation: sky-yachts! Who doesn't want to go on a sky cruise, or enable cargo logistic solutions that can better serve disaster victims, better preserve our nation’s most pristine environments, and better help the military move mass cargo and personnel to remote areas lacking runways or roads? 

The Aeroscraft vehicle compresses inert helium into large storage tanks to become heavier than air. The helium is released back into the vehicles' envelope to become lighter-than-air. No helium is lost during the process and no helium cleaning is required. This innovative control of static heaviness (COSH) system means an Aeroscraft can provide precise cargo deployment from hover, or when landed, free from the need for existing infrastructure or ground personnel. The Aeroscraft is the only rigid variable buoyancy air vehicle of its kind designed to control static lift in all stages of air or ground operations, including the ability to offload payload without re-ballasting. The Aeroscraft is the only advanced rigid hybrid airship with COSH-enabled, VTOL capability, offering an escape from infrastructure, ground personnel and other logistical challenges involved in cargo deployment and general aviation.

The Aeroscraft has a rigid structural design and is the only rigid structure variable buoyancy air vehicle of its kind.

Its rigid structure is made from ultra-light aluminium and carbon fibre materials. It consists of transverse bulkheads which are connected to longitudinal members. It is reinforced with high strength composite tensioned cables.

This rigid structure provides an excellent range of hard points for mounting engines, canards, cockpit, propulsion systems, and other auxiliary systems both inside and outside of the hull.

The Aeroscraft is equipped with vectored thrust engines that rotate and allow manoeuvrability. In addition to aiding helicopter-like vertical take-off and landing capability, the vectored thrust propels the vehicle in forward flight and aids the vehicle with ground-based taxiing.

Video courtesy of WorldwideAeros.

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