NASA Spiral Duct ESTOL Concept

Extremely Short Takeoff and Landing advanced vehicle concept based upon the coupling of the Lippisch Aerodyne and Custer Channel Wing. Designed to takeoff of at a speed of just 30 mph, with ground distances of less than 150 ft. The outer panels are freewings (able to freely pivot) so that the vehicle is less gust sensitive (which is a major ESTOL problem). Developed as part of the NASA Personal AIr Vehicle project under Mark Moore.

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Author Watchinprogress ( ago)
Bello, voglio provare a costruirlo. Dovrò aggiungere qualche superficie
mobile, così, tanto per potergli dare manovrabilità ma è una bella ideuzza.

Author nicandlucian ( ago)
No more 3D VR models build the damn thing and fly it so we can see it work,
and what is it with prop engines isn't there anyone that can build
something better than a prop, jet, rocket, or turbine engine some thing new
and ground breaking like anti-gravity type shit.

Author Фёдор зыков ( ago)
а скока такая стоит вапрос $

Author dtripakis ( ago)
You are right, but a "flying car" is not only supposed to take off from the
road. It could TOL from an airport. Imagine being able to fly to another
city, drive around, then fly back. Even through the airports, it would
still be amazing. And yes I agree, only recreational. But then again, arent
Ferrari's purely recreational too ?

Author HouseFallenDragon ( ago)
They could become something of a "lifeboat" for large bombers, & could
actually be launched in the same way as the bombs themselves. They could
also become lifeboats on a re-created airship industry, so events like the
Hindenberg wouldn't have such a high death-toll if they happened again.
There are a large number of uses for a small aircraft with deployable
wings, the ability to lift at only 30mph, & not needing a long runway to
get into or out of the air.

Author HouseFallenDragon ( ago)
Actually, there is another market you're not considering - probably because
they probably wouldn't even want it unless the U.S. got into a war more
widespread then the stuff happening in the Middle East: the U.S. military.
Lengthen the fuselage a little, you can put cargo into it you could get to
the front lines with a very minimum airfield - if you even needed a
dedicated airfield for it. Thicken the spiral wing, you could put machine
guns in them & launch 4 or 5 per C-130 cargoplane.

Author holy-terrorist platinium ( ago)
Holy-Terrorist:>*=* Super!

Author vaxiawval ( ago)
Looks like a 1932 Stipa-Caproni duct aircraft, it flew quite well.

Author Ronnie Dib ( ago)

Author Rob T ( ago)
That would just spin the opposite way to the propeller as soon as it took

Author Ron Armstrong ( ago)
See Heinkel Wespe.

Author piolenc ( ago)
In my early days of fooling around with ducted-fan-based concepts, but
before reading Lippsch's 1958 aerodyne paper, I came up with a flying duct
with a raked inlet like this one, but with a straight exit opening instead
of a raked one as in this concept. The idea of course was to get
asymmetrical forces, i.e. a net lift and positive pitching moment from
essentially axial flow. I didn't realize the takeoff run could be shortened
with just stub wings like those shown here, so I looked at VTO.

Author 333crypta ( ago)
looks like would make awesome hybrid uav/rov that can fly underwater as
well as in air.

Author Sandro Fortini ( ago)
Wonder if Dyson or more of it type of wind manipulation for a mini Ramjet
with a train launcher would work in reality .... maybe , maybe not for
everyday people

Author helium guy ( ago)
o.O if it crashes the rotors kill you

Author NASAPAV ( ago)
You clearly have not understood or thought about this concept enough. Read
about the Aerodyne and Channel Wing and then come back and ask that
question. An asymmetric lifting duct is definitely not the same as a round
desktop fan. Criticize or try to learn something new - it's your choice.

Author ReliquaryPrime ( ago)
NASA really needs to hire someone with some media savy. The thing doesn't
even get off the ground in the CONCEPT video! Probably not the image they
want to project...

Author NASAPAV ( ago)
I have come to the same conclusions myself - look for the next version of
this to be pure VTOL, with a focus on extremely low community noise with
even greater compactness - essentially a minimalistic approach to a single
person mobility device. ESTOL simply doesn't have a path forward, as there
is no infrastructure from which it can leverage - and it requires that
infrastructure to be in place before the vehicle has any value.

Author toose70 (1467 years ago)
Interesting concept, but for what market? ATM it could really only be
pitched at the recreational or LSA Market. Most of the aircraft sold in
this space are 2 seaters. If the other market is "everybody" IE flying car
scenario, then the only evolution of this that will work is a VTOL
aircraft, ie if it needs to land in any distance other then straight up and
down, then its never going to be a "flying car" vehicle, even if it can fly

Author Bob Furr ( ago)
Might be interesting to do this as an ultralight... but honestly they take
off and land at about 30mph already. Now power off what would the glide be
for this thing? Honestly that would be my greatest fear. Engine off the
glide would be something like the shuttle....

Author TheJetcruiser007 ( ago)
put counter rotating prop; add swing wing and elongate fuselage !

Author silentuzi ( ago)
design it for underwater use... its better that way..

Author m1aws (1736 years ago)
@MantuaSkater64 A: Flying.

Author NASAPAV ( ago)
Will, if you can't provide a reference - then you really shouldn't be so
positive should you? If you are thinking of the Aerodyne, it did not 'fail
miserably' - Dornier built a functioning prototype that flew fine - but it
was wingless and provided very short range capability.

Author SuperConfederateMan ( ago)
im almost positive the nazis tried to do this and failed horribly

Author NASAPAV ( ago)
And what specific concept would this be? In my description I specifically
state that this concept is derived from a mixture of Lippsich' Aerodyne and
Custer's Channel Wing. Lippsich was a great German aerodynamicist -
although almost all of his designs were never realized in flight. So if
this infringes on your design - then I think you are failing to attribute
authorship to the original work by Lippisch and Custer

Author Himmler620 ( ago)
This is another 100% clone of german ww2 plane designs by nasa. Which is no
surprise since NASA was ran by german aeronautics specialists.... Pathetic
copyright infringement. I Report it for infringing my copyright!

Author Kaledius ( ago)
wont the cockpit disttrupt the inflow? how much?

Author Nicolas Otala ( ago)
For something like that I would use counter-rotating props to stay on the
safe side.

Author Justwantahover ( ago)
Good basis for a flying car concept!

Author Justwantahover ( ago)
@NASAPAV Check out the "Whirwing glide tests" on my channel. As you say,
any shape will fly (as long as it can act as a plane wing) but c of g is
the key to making it fly. Vtol pavs need c of g in center of craft (for
vtol c of g). So the challenge is to have both vtol and plane c of g in the
same place (which is essential). The canard plane design solves this
problem easily. My glide tests prove that it would work as a plane!

Author NASAPAV ( ago)
Do the calculations - optimum wing span for a 600 lb aircraft flying at 130
mph is about 15 ft. Which is what it is. Now, that means you have to build
the aircraft to have a 300 lb empty weight. But look at the Rutan Quickie
aircraft. About a 15 ft span, and about 250 lb empty weight. That's the
idea - but this specific version of the concept is challenged with
excessive wetted area (which turns into weight!)

Author Bee JayGee ( ago)
Hoew would that fly with such a short wing span ?

Author wcw43921 ( ago)
Interesting design--it looks like you could drive it on roads and highways
with the outer wings folded. Perhaps this concept could make the dream of a
roadable aircraft a reality.

Author htomerif ( ago)
@alvaradokids Yes, you see, what you've go to do here is add another engine
and place the cockpit between them. Then get rid of the tube part, since
its hard to manufacture and serves no purpose. For better lift you can then
put the props in front instead of behind and lower the cockpit for better
stability. Finally lengthen the tail and youve got something that can
actually be built, and makes sense.

Author MrCriticOfAll ( ago)
And in this hours traffic report we had 72 planes down on Skyway 8,3 were
rear end accidents,49 involved drink flying and the 30 through drug abuse
thought they were still in the simulators.

Author kko0219 ( ago)
Is this patented?

Author Zachary Schroeder ( ago)
So this is why funds got cut.

Author Elijah Vivio ( ago)
looks cool.... MUST FLY LIKE A GOD.

Author LeKTQp ( ago)
хорошая графическая модель )

Author KRAYSLiCK999 ( ago)

Author leloodallasmultipass ( ago)
@silentthunderstorm yet, you still manage to miss the point of this. I
didn't claim it was simulation software... buuuuuut, any 3d model in the
right formats can be shuffled among any number of simulation and animation
or rendering or whatever type of software so it CAN be tested. for someone
who doesn't like being talked down to, you sure jumped the gun with your
expectations and gave this guy hard time over your own ignorance.
"concept"- look it up. no one owes you a flying anything.

Author SilentThunderStorm ( ago)
@leloodallasmultipass Yes, I am aware of software simulation; this is
obviously *not* that. How can I tell? Easy... *it only rolls across the
floor*. No aerofoil movement, no simulated air flow, no explanation of any
aeronautical benefits. Nothing. I could mock this crap up in Blender (for
free), and, again, it means *nothing*. Again, show *anything* that shows
that this thing *might* fly. And stop being condescending, its childish and
self-righteous; you don't know my background.

Author leloodallasmultipass (1581 year ago)
@silentthunderstorm are you aware of simulation software? because it is
very possible to show that something can work in the computer. most
vehicles are tested extensively in the computer before being tested IRL.
So, in actuality, this MAY be the result of a lot of work and MAY prove a
lot more than someone with your limited experience can understand.

Author DRICE ( ago)
how do you steer it?

Author PanzerBuyer ( ago)
that needs an ejection seat!

Author MrRedNeckParadise ( ago)
@NASAPAV Well, he had a point. Use some foam or fiberglass - or wood - buy
an RC A/C motor, build a scale model about a foot long, and see if it works
in the real world. Cost ya a couple hundred bucks, tops - plus your time.
Science: Propose a model. Test your hypothesis in the real world. Make
adjustments to your hypothesis, if needed. Test again. If a small scale
model works, scale up - and test, again.

Author Gabriel Shye-White ( ago)
and This is useful how exactly?

Author backseatsmen360 ( ago)
that is so cool

Author Bob Bobs ( ago)
@NASAPAV who cares that right now its only a concept. if people never made
concepts they would never make the real thing. keep thinks of cool shit
nasa and can u guys make a jetpack already

Author FourDollaRacing ( ago)
@silentthunderstorm The govenmint doesn't need an excuse to spend your
money. This video is FULL of hot air...what more could you ask for?

Author CI9TK ( ago)
I get the duct effect on the rear control surfaces at low airspeeds but
this looks like a lot of wing/lift-surface loading for any craft able to
carry engine, pilot and landing gear.

Author Lord Xantosh ( ago)
hmmm not bagging on the person who made this but it looks like a smaller
version of "Rick Hunter's aerial acrobatics plane" used in the very 1st
episode of Robotech series 1 (also known as super dimensional Fortress:

Author wcolbyHD ( ago)
@NASAPAV I dig your channel, I have a flying lawnmower & Snoopys doghouse
on my channel (and some NASA stuff ;-)

Author NeKoShinn666 ( ago)
2 words.. Death Trap. :D

Author Ken Bell ( ago)
Reversing the pitch, basically flipping the duct, makes a positive angle of
attack. Force is created at the front and top of the aircraft. A rear,
lower control surface uses ducted air to vary pitch. Probably unstable
though, so a tail would need to be added. Just imagine what you've now,
with a slight negative pitch, in a wind tunnel.

Author NASAPAV ( ago)
What do you mean? Do you mean the angle of attack, or are you talking about
the scant angle?

Author Ken Bell ( ago)
The pitch of the duct is backwards

Author Gianfranco Fronzi ( ago)

Author Liquidazot ( ago)
this sisisi UGLY?

Author 10skydrive10 ( ago)
it would be even cooler if it was able to dive into the water after it
flies and still be going by it's blades

Author TheCaracatusPotts ( ago)
Sorry, original post did not include all of Q2: Secondly, piddling all over
my quotation of the KISS Principle, is/could the thrust be powerful enough
to enable vertical flight, if the capsule could pivot? All this is beside
the point? Where can I order one from????? :-))

Author NASAPAV (717 years ago)
Search Flying Doghouse here on Youtube - you'll see. Unless dynamic scaling
laws are used, anything can fly.

Author TheCaracatusPotts (492 years ago)
I like the design and concept. My questions are firstly, couldn't the duct
provide enough lift, without the side winglets? Follow on question,
wouldn't all the hardware (read; mass) needed to stow them be
counterproductive in response to P/WR? Still on same subject, the KISS
Principle would also be effective here, what with adding mechanisms to
break down. And secondly, piddling all over my quotation on the KISS
Principle, could/is the thrust be powerful enough to provide a pivot for
the cap

Author NASAPAV ( ago)
If you are tired of looking at computer animations - then don't. But just
about anything can fly, youtube is proof of that, lawnmowers can fly,
snoppy dog houses can fly. Unless dynamic scaling is used, that also is
meaningless. The animations are not meant to prove flight, they are
conveying a new approach to achieving an objective where visualization
helps to understand what is going on. Alone it is meaningless, but in
combination with the analysis it is useful.

Author SilentThunderStorm ( ago)
Sorry.. very tired of seeing computer mock ups... you could have painted a
rock with chicken wings, and it means NOTHING. At the very least, build a
small proof of concept model with fiberglass, a lawn mower engine, and some
remote control actuators.... otherwise, nobody you are attempting to show
off to has ANY reason to believe this thing would fly.

Author Tony Kollar ( ago)
This looks like the future to me, can I add a jet engine and some better
looking wings?

Author alejandro ( ago)
Muy buen diseño. Habría que ver si vuela y como vuela..., pero es un diseño

Author jjmr97 ( ago)
ah ¿que no mola ahora el avioncito de la nasa no?

Author Jesse Hamilton ( ago)
I like the design. The torque issue could be resolved with a counter
rotating prop system. A quick deploy chute also could be an answer to a
major failure situation, all on command from a computer or manually. Any
luck with me finding a job somewhere in your company? HA!

Author noobonspeed9091 (106 years ago)
how does it gather lift with those is wings there tiny

Author Greg Tanous ( ago)
Hi- the lift and thrust is ok -the torque (unless you have counter rotating
props!)and small or lack of control surfaces is a concern -RcSuperhero
(dot) com

Author FishyRiddles ( ago)
2 counter rotating props would solve the torque problem, but i know squat
about the aerodynamics... and with redundency on both props weight might
start to go up. love the idea though...

Author dunners2004 ( ago)
@morrielarsen You couldn't be more wrong! The fact the propeller is
incorporated within the wing means a much higher airspeed is realised over
the inner surface of the wing, meaning high lift can be generated at very
slow speeds, hence VSTOL capability :)

Author dunners2004 ( ago)
This design is really interesting. Custer would have loved this. My
question...Air is drawn over the leading edge by the prop, in order to
create a low pressure on its inner surface and hence lots of lift. Is the
reverse true of the rear of the duct? The prop would surely create high
pressure on the inside of the rear part of the duct, meaning that
essentially the whole duct is creating lift? Look forward to your answers :)

Author Diddleshot ( ago)
Nice, looks like a friggin penguin. I like it though.

Author Cristian Alonso ( ago)
Is a copy of the Rick Hunter`s plane at ROBOTECH..... Don`t invent

Author NASAPAV ( ago)
Excellent observations, you are right on the money with your concerns. The
power must be redundant as the vehicle can not tolerate a complete power
loss. This is accomplished with multiple electric motors with overrun
clutch - however, if the prop fails during slow approach - ouch! The
stability of this specific approach was highly problemmatic - this concept
is now about 10 years old and we are working a new version of the spiral
duct that alleviates these issues - soon to be revealed!

Author MARCO MORGANTI ( ago)
Ma le ali?! Non sembrano capaci di reggere il peso.. e poi in atterraggio?!
Ma il motore?!

Author femanvate ( ago)
Awesome concept. I have a couple questions. 1. if the majority of the lift
comes from the rotor-accelerated airflow (ala channel wing) wont an engine
failure mean there's a huge "unsurvivability window" when too low and/or
slow to achieve a power-off glide speed? 2. how do you counteract the
torque from this combination of huge prop, small wing/tail, and how does
the small tail provide lateral stability with so much side area fwd of the
CG? 3. will flight stability rely on computers?

Author Morrie Larsen ( ago)
@charums just like all other wings, they provide lift and control.

Author Morrie Larsen ( ago)
Cool concept, looks like pilot visibility would be an issue but I like it.

Author ForViewingOnly ( ago)
Interesting. Could it glide safely if the engine/motor fails?

Author NASAPAV ( ago)
Comparative to what - a helicopter with an aero efficiency of 4 to 5 (L/D).
This vehicle can easily get twice that. So it depends what the mission is,
and what is trying to be achieved.

Author ColinTheAwesomest ( ago)
That thing is as aerodynamic as a sofa! How do you expect it to fly?

Author charums ( ago)
@NASAPAV I dont understand, what for those small ugly shaped wings ? They
help to achieve something, that I can not comprehend?

Author 1lllllllll1 ( ago)
Doesn't this need a bigger Fuel Tank? If it is a PAV. Would that not
increase live load or whatchamacallit? Add a little luggage and I winder
how heavy it would be. Can a ESTOL PAV then still be made? Or would it end
up being a helicopter essentially?

Author NASAPAV ( ago)
We are working on the next concept, that pushes electric propulsion
technologies further and addresses some of the shortfalls of the Puffin. We
hope to have that ready by the end of summer, including some sub-scale

Author Prince Vegeta ( ago)
what happened to the puffin lol..

Author Abnermoon ( ago)
opposing mini-thrusters for pitch, drag flap for attitude, a full box of
depends for the sudden stop

Author NASAPAV ( ago)
Sure, but the fact is - I am the first one to agree that this is not the
ideal concept. There are some new technologies on it that are promising,
but that should be integrated onto more promising configurations. I
particularly remain intrigued with the ability of free-wing wingtips that
can help resolve the low speed gust stall issues, and the ability of the
channel-wing/aerodyne duct to generate very high lift up to very high
angles of attack.

Author Jose Alvarado ( ago)
@NASAPAV ok something like the NOTAR system mcdonell duglas useson their

Author NASAPAV ( ago)
Good point, co-axials offer a lot, but require quite a bit of separation or
the noise can be very problematic(I don't think the Russians care much
about noise). There are lots of other solutions as well...

Author Jose Alvarado ( ago)
@NASAPAV ok but why do americans and europeans refuse to use the coaxial
aproach i dont understand it is such a common sence solution the
russians have a pattent on this or whats the big obstruction??? or is it
just american stubbornes to change systems because russians use coaxial
aircraft??? if i recall corectly the father of the american helicopter is a
russian igor sikorsky (ukranian)

Author halcyon0830 ( ago)

Author NASAPAV ( ago)
Yes, that is one of the deficiencies in this configuration. The torque
would have to be taken out with a rear vane, which would cause increased
noise in close proximity to the prop. This was merely an exploratory
concept looking at super STOL, with specifically shaped ducts to provide
extreme lift - so the configuration was just one step towards advancing new
duct technologies.

Author Jose Alvarado ( ago)
what about torque......isnt a single rotor going to create torque twist
shouldnt it be a coaxial design???

Author MegaPandamusic ( ago)

Author geekfish ( ago)
@ezhavapanicker Imagine a pedestrian crash, Clipped at the shin then
shredded in the blades, doh.... Looks cool....

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