Wednesday, July 25, 2007

The Hybrid-Airplane a new hybrid airship concept

Today we want move a bit away from our hot air coverage before coming back to it, in the following days. There is a new hybrid airship concept in the works. It has won an innovation price in 2006(in German) from a German science TV show called "Welt der Wunder" and uses a lenticular envelope, with two non directional wings which will rotate to provide vertical take of and landing abilities. Csaba Singer from the Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt (DLR) held a presentation about the Project at the DGLR Workshop X in Munich mid June 2007. Csaba Singer made the presentation slides available for download, so if you didn't have a chance to catch it back then you can now take a look at them. Also there has been a German patent application which can be seen at the DEPATISnet Website of the German patent office, it provides more diagrams and details than the presentation. There are also two videos available on YouTube.
This first one is a computer animated video showing how the airship could work:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vIFhNzJZxzo

The second video shows a model prototype of the airship performing different maneuvers:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gmUcpEJys_Y
Right now Csaba Singer and the DLR are looking for Students wanting to write their master thesis on the project. If you are a student and interested in this, please go to the Website of the DLR and read the description of the topic. Or contact Csaba Singer at the DLR under:
Csaba Singer
German Aerospace Center
Institute of Technical Thermodynamics, Solar Research
Stuttgart - Germany
Tel.: +49 711 6862-490
Fax: +49 711 6862-747

What do you think about the project, will it be successful? Will it have scaling issues? Has there been something similar that has been developed, or patented? Tell us what you think leave your comments or write us an email. It's another ambitious project that we will keep an eye on. Make sure to checkout the English Hybrid-Airplane Website or German Hybrid-Flugzeug Website.

5 comments:

Joe said...

Very interesting.

Only problem left is the use of helium.
I read that helium supplies could run out by the year 2015.


Maybe the new Chicken-feather hydrogen
storage solution could be use full
for having another go at using hydrogen
as a lighter than air gas instead
of helium.

Chicken Feathers Can Store Lots of Hydrogen

Carbonized chicken feather fibers can hold vast amounts of hydrogen according to Richard P. Wool, Ph.D., professor of chemical engineering and director of the Affordable Composites from Renewable Resources program at the University of Delaware in Newark.

Maybe a combination of hydrogen as fuel
and lifting gas could be archieved.

Very interesting.

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